What is a social security number?

Your Social Security number is very important.  It is a number that is issued by the Social Security Administration to identify United States citizens and immigrants who are legally authorized to work and live in the United States.  It is a lifelong form of identification and is very valuable.  You will be asked for your Social Security number every time you apply for a loan or a job or when filling out important documents.  As such, your Social Security number is also linked to your credit history.  You should always protect your Social Security number! 

You should never let your friends or family members “borrow” your Social Security number.  This could really affect you in a bad way.  Even if your loved ones have good intentions, if they fail to timely pay bills that are opened in your name, you will be stuck paying the bill!  If you fail to pay, your credit will be negatively affected and you will have a hard time opening up accounts in the future and/or getting a home or apartment.  You can even lose your driver’s license.

It is also not a good idea to lend your Social Security number to friends and/or family members who are in the United States without papers; this can also affect their chances of one day becoming lawful permanent residents.  Undocumented persons cannot knowingly make false claims of citizenship.  Using a Social Security number that is not yours or using someone else’s birth certificate amounts to making a false claim of citizenship.  The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services might deny someone’s application based on this type of fraud.  You should always take great precautions to protect your personal information.