Updated 5/7/12: Four years later, items like this are getting a bit more scrutiny:
Anyone who has a car knows that it has a 17 digit vehicle identification number, on the dashboard, the inside of the driver door, and then in numerous hidden places. This number tells everything you may want to know about the vehicle. For instance, the frst didgit or letter tells you where the car was manufactured ( 1= United States. 2= Canada, J= Japan, and so forth). The tenth digit will tell you what year it was maufactured (S= 1995, B= 1981, 1= 2001, 5= 2005, 9= 2009). Other places will say what color it is, or the engine type, etc.
Now, we all know that the important identification number to our “person” is our social security number. Just like the vehicle identification number, the social security number carries a wealth of information. Of primary importance here for discussion is the first five digits and what they represent. Basically, they indicate where and what time period the Social Security number was issued to the individual. For a basic review of the SSN: http://people.howstuffworks.com/social-security-number2.htm .
What do the numbers mean?
SSNs are not assigned consecutively; the first was not the lowest number, and the most recent is not the highest. They are assigned regionally and in batches.The nine-digit SSN, which has been issued in more than 400 million different sequences, is divided into three parts: area numbers, group numbers and serial numbers.
<!– Photo courtesy
–>The numbers on your Social Security card actually mean something!
- Area numbers – The first three numbers originally represented the state in which a person first applied for a Social Security card. Numbers started in the northeast and moved westward. This meant that people on the east coast had the lowest numbers and those on the west coast had the highest. Since 1972, the SSA has assigned numbers and issued cards based on the ZIP code in the mailing address provided on the original application form. Since the applicant’s mailing address doesn’t have to be the same as his residence, his area number doesn’t necessarily represent the state in which he resides. For many of us who received our SSNs as infants, the area number indicates the state we were born in. You can find out which area numbers go with each state at SSA.gov: Social Security Number Allocations.
- Group numbers – These two middle digits, which range from 01 through 99, are simply used to break all the SSNs with the same area number into smaller blocks, which makes administration easier. (The SSA says that, for administrative reasons, group numbers issued first consist of the odd numbers from 01 through 09, and then even numbers from 10 through 98, within each area number assigned to a state. After all the numbers in group 98 of a specific area have been issued, the even groups 02 through 08 are used, followed by odd groups 11 through 99.)
- Serial numbers – Within each group designation, serial numbers — the last four digits in an SSN — run consecutively from 0001 through 9999.
Although SSNs are issued in some order, there is no simple way to tell a person’s age based on his Social Security number.
Gender – Male
Street Address – 5046 S GREENWOOD AVE
City, State, Zip – CHICAGO IL 60615-2806
Probable Current Address – Yes
Telephone Accountholder –
Social Security – 042-68-xxxx
Date of Birth –
Deceased – No
Date Record Verified – Jun 05 – Nov 05