Q:

What do you do when you realize your Social Security card is lost or stolen?

A:

Quick Answer

If your Social Security card is lost or stolen, report the theft to the local police department, place a credit file fraud alert, and monitor your credit reports for unauthorized account activities, explains About.com. Replace your Social Security card through the Social Security Administration. If you have proof of identity theft, report it to the Federal Trade Commission and possibly obtain a new Social Security number, advises the Federal Trade Commission.

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What do you do when you realize your Social Security card is lost or stolen?
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Full Answer

Place a fraud alert by phoning one of the three national credit reporting agencies -- Equifax, Experian or TransUnion, reports About.com. Request credit reports from all three companies, study them carefully, and close any accounts you didn't open. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission online or by phone.

You can only replace your Social Security card in person or by mail, according to the Social Security Administration. To replace the card, fill out an application form, and supply documentation, such as a U.S. driver's license and a U.S. birth certificate or passport, to prove your identity and your U.S. citizenship or lawful immigrant status.

If you have evidence that someone has stolen and is misusing your Social Security number, the Social Security Administration may issue you a new number, explains the Federal Trade Commission. The application process is free. You must prove your identity, age and citizenship status. Because businesses and government agencies may have your old records on file, obtaining a new Social Security number doesn't alleviate all identity theft problems, but it enables you to limit ongoing misuse of your personal information.

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