I used to carry around a wallet that would make George Costanza proud, it was filled with credit cards, my license, photos of my relatives, etc. In 2023? I've thinned out: License, debit card, and medical insurance card. That's it. If you're one of the few left that carries their Social Security card around in public, the Federal Government is warning us that we should get it out of our wallets immediately.

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According to ssa.gov, knowing your number should be enough info for the rare instance that your Social Security number is actually required. Outside of our neighbor Pennsylvania, you won't even need to bring your card to the DMV in order to request a Real ID. If someone does ask for your number, be careful. Ask why your number is needed, how it will be used, and what will happen if you refuse to provide it. What could a scammer do if they have yours? Identity theft can lead to all sorts of unpleasant situations, including opening up fraudulent credit cards in your name, taking out loans, and generally ruin your credit before you even know that it's happening.

SSA.gov strongly suggests never routinely carrying your Social Security card around with you, and also to open a personal my Social Security account to receive another layer of protection to keep your information safe.

The last time that I actually had to take my original card out of my house was in 2017 when I applied for my passport, and in 2019 when it was still a required document in order to receive a Real ID.

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