|Received:||8/3/2007 6:09:10 PM|
|Agency:||Federal Trade Commission|
|Rule:||Private Sector Use of SSNs|
Comments:The cat is out of the bag on the private sector's use of the SSN as a unique identifier. What the FTC needs to do is issue official guidance on the use of the SSN as a 'secret' or 'password' by private sector. Many, especially in the financial sector, pretend that knowledge of an SSN authenticates identity. The raft of identify thefts in recent years proves the fallaciousness of this reasoning. One may speculate this method is commonly employed because real authentication is more expensive, and the cost of identity theft is often not borne by those using such inappropriate authentication schemes. Having official guidance to point to in opposition of this practice would help to reduce identity theft.