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How Social Security Shares Data to Help You

April 10, 2017 • By

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Last Updated: April 10, 2017

data sharingSocial Security is with you throughout life’s journey — when you’re born, start working, get married, become disabled, lose a loved one, and when you retire. At every stage, we strive to make your interaction with us as seamless as possible. One way we do that is through our data exchange programs. Data exchange happens when Social Security electronically obtains or shares personal information about someone with another government or private entity. This only happens when it’s legally permitted, technologically secure, and in accordance with your individual privacy rights.

Our data exchanges begin at birth when Social Security receives your name, date of birth, and parents’ names from states so we can provide a new social security number for a baby. This allows Social Security to create your first Social Security record.

Our data exchanges continue when you take your driving test or request an identification card with a department of motor vehicles (DMV). Our exchanges allow the DMV to verify your Social Security number to issue a government document or register you to vote. When you get your first job, employers use the Social Security verification service to verify your information before submitting your wage reports to Social Security. This ensures we can accurately track your earnings over your lifetime to secure your retirement, disability, and survivors coverage.

If you become disabled and eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance, we share your data with other federal agencies to help you get additional benefits, such as those from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, if you’re a veteran. If you served in the military, we obtain a veteran’s status as a wounded warrior to expedite your disability claim with Social Security. We also provide disability status to the U.S. Department of Education for potential student loan forgiveness.

After a person’s death, Social Security gathers death information from states, and other federal agencies through data exchange to support their loved ones and provide final death benefits.

Data exchanges facilitate Social Security’s efficient administration of our programs while saving tax payers’ money. You can find more information about Social Security data exchange programs at

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About the Author

Stephen Evangelista, Associate Commissioner, Office of Data Exchange and Policy Publications

Stephen Evangelista is the Associate Commissioner for the Office of Data Exchange and Policy Publications


  1. Mary K.

    How dare you share when I am eligible to receive Medicare with insurance companies. I am bombarded from insurance companies to get their policies. I am not eligible to receive Medicare benefits yet. That is not right. I do not like receiving unwanted e-mails, telephone calls, and mail regarding health insurance which I am not eligible for due to Social Security data exchanges with insurance companies.

    • Luis A.

      Hi Mary. Please note that we do not share information for mass-marketing purposes. Your information is secured with us. As you know, marketing companies have many ways of gathering information, but they do not have access to our records. In our article “How Social Security Shares Data to Help You,” we were transparent about which agencies we allow access to the information we have in our records. You may note that none of the agencies mentioned were marketing agencies. We hope this helps.

  2. Carol

    If I retire at 62 and my husband retire at 62 will both of us get a separate check. I am a year older than my husband.

  3. Juanita W.

    How to I get a verification of my maiden name on SSA records?

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