Publishing Your SSN May Result in Identity Theft

moneyI was just reading about LifeLock CEO Todd Davis. In the USA, LifeLock ads prominently display his Social Security Number. Fellow Canadians can think of a Social Security Number like their Social Insurance Number.

Here's one such ad:


If you think putting your SSN in an ad is a bad idea, you're right.

He’s been a victim of identity theft at least 13 times, according to the Phoenix New Times.

That’s 12 more times than has previously been known.

In June 2007, Threat Level reported that Davis had been the victim of identity theft after someone used his identity to obtain a $500 loan from a check-cashing company. Davis discovered the crime only after the company called his wife’s cellphone to recover the unpaid debt.

About four months after that story published, Davis’ identity was stolen again by someone in Albany, Georgia, who opened an AT&T/Cingular wireless account using his Social Security number (.pdf), according to a police report obtained by the New Times. The perpetrator racked up $2,390 in charges on the account, which remained unpaid. Davis, whose real name according to police reports is Richard Todd Davis, only learned a year later that his identity had been stolen again after AT&T handed off the debt to a collection agency and a note appeared on his credit report.

Then last year, Davis discovered seven more fraudulent accounts on his credit report that were opened with his personal information and have outstanding debt, according to the police report.

Someone opened a Verizon account in New York, leaving an unpaid bill of at least $186. An account at Centerpoint Energy, a Texas utility, was delinquent $122. Credit One Bank was owed $573, and Swiss Colony, a gift-basket company, was seeking $312.

In addition to these amounts, Davis’s credit report showed five collection agencies were seeking other sums from accounts opened in his name: Bay Area Credit was pursuing $265; Associated Credit Services was seeking two debts in the amount of $207 and $213; Enhanced Recovery Corporation was chasing $250 and $381.

I take it this LifeLock service doesn't actually work.

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Comments (5 - click here to join in!)


I've been following this story for a bit.

The arrogance of the guy makes him such a huge targett that this was bound to happen. You would think that they would have been extra diligent with checking up on him.

But I am sure the fear that these companies instill in the American people will work and the company will be fine.

May 19, 2010 @ 2:16 PM


This is so great.

May 19, 2010 @ 2:26 PM


Good thing I was never tempted to sign up for this service, but I wonder what the percentages are. I'm sure there have been many, many attempts to steal his identity. 13 is still 13 times too many, yes, but out of say, a million attempts, it's a relatively small success ratio.

May 19, 2010 @ 6:30 PM

Ajax Mike

I'll bet the only reason this hasn't shown up on The Daily Show or Colbert Report yet is because they're on hiatus this week. This is right up their alley. Hilarious.

May 19, 2010 @ 8:01 PM

James Edgar

LOL Stupid ass.

May 19, 2010 @ 11:37 PM

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