Pentagon Visitor's Entrance Tightens Protection of SSNs

Published, July 29, 2013

Fast FactThe Pentagon visitor's entrance has implemented keypad entry on the Social Security number (SSN). The implementation is based on a recommendation by the Department of the Navy Chief Information Officer Privacy Team to the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Previously the SSN was asked for verbally, which allowed the potential for being overheard by other visitors. As an interim measure, visitors were asked to write their SSN on post-it notes. The implementation of the keypad entry reduces the risk of SSN compromise.

The SSN is the most common element reported in the loss, theft or compromise of personally identifiable information (PII). It is one of the key elements used to commit identity theft and fraud. The DON CIO continues to implement guidance to better safeguard PII by reducing or eliminating the collection, use, display and maintenance of the SSN. The DON issued a Naval Administrative (NAVADMIN) message that provides details on the department's efforts, which include a phased SSN reduction plan. This DON-wide effort requires the attention and cooperation of senior leadership. It also requires compliance from all Sailors, Marines and civilians as well as all contractors operating under a DON contract.

To read the latest NAVADMIN, which summarizes the DON CIO’s phased approach to SSN reduction, see: DON SSN Reduction Plan Phase Three.

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