Congress Strikes Back at Synthetic Identity Fraud

Congress is striking back and fraudsters that steal children’s social security numbers to perpetrate synthetic identity fraud.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved a new law that U.S. Reps. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL) and Randy Hultgren (R-IL) led to stop synthetic ID fraud in which children’s identities are commonly stolen and used by scammers to create fake identities.

The new law would require the Social Security Administration to accept Digital Signatures rather than relying on snail mail and physical signatures to validate a social security number.

By sending in a Social Security Number and a Name, a lender or bank can validate directly with the Social Security Administration if the social security number has been issued to the person opening the account.

This is a big step in helping to crack back at Synthetic Identity fraud.

Synthetic Identity Is Growing Problem, Particularly after 2011

1 out of every 10 children will have their social security numbers stolen and used in the creation of synthetic identities.

The problem was greatly exacerbated after 2011 when the Social Security Administration randomized the issuance of Social Security numbers and stopped publishing which social security numbers had been issued.

This effectively pushed fraudsters to find social security numbers that had not yet been issued.  And the biggest victims are children that were born after 2011.

Here is some analysis which was conducted by ID Analytics in a White Paper entitled The Synthetic Epidemic: Understanding Identity Fraud after SSN Randomization.  ID Analytics You can access the full and insightful study here – .


Frank McKenna is the Chief Fraud Strategist for PointPredictive and a Fraud Consultant based in San Diego California