DoD Replacing Social Security Numbers With Unique Identifiers

As identity theft becomes more prevalent, the Department of Defense (DoD) is doing their part to protect those carrying DoD identification cards, which includes service members and their dependents. One step in the DoD’s overall effort to combat identity theft will begin the phasing out of Social Security numbers on all DoD identification cards, according to the Pentagon. The Social Security numbers will begin to disappear as of June 1.

Current DoD identification common access cards have the bearer’s Social Security number printed on the back. For dependents and retirees, the numbers are printed on the front. For those cards beginning to expire in June, the DoD will replace them with new cards bearing unique DoD identification numbers.

This number will be 10 digits long and everyone tied to the DoD will receive one. For service members, this number will double as their Geneva Convention identification number.

Those qualifying for DoD benefits will also be given 11 digit benefits numbers. These will contain 9 digits identifying the sponsor for the benefits with the last 2 being used to identify specific family members. Although the Social Security numbers will no longer be printed on the cards, they will remain embedded on bar codes on the cards. These will not be eliminated until 2012.

Cards will be replaced as their expiration date comes due. It will take the DoD approximately 4 years to replace all expired cards with newly issued cards bearing the new DoD identification numbers.

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