Protection Basics for Brides and Grooms — No, Not That Kind of Protection

Ever since I became the victim of ID theft straight out of college when I made the mistake of losing my Social Security card, I’ve been fairly paranoid about giving out my personal information. That said, I continue to believe that a little common sense goes a long way toward preventing situations in which unsavory individuals will do things like, oh, sign up for about sixteen mobile phone accounts using your identity. Maybe that’s why I don’t give much though to ID theft as it pertains to weddings?

sad_bride

But hey, when I assume I make an ass yada yada. There are still people out there who use their Social Security numbers as their license numbers! People who fall for online phishing scams! People who, er, make the mistake of keeping their tax ID cards in their wallets. I’m sure you’re none of those people and that you won’t end up scrubbing floors to pay for 150 plates of veal because your credit card has suddenly stopped working, but perhaps some much less wise bride will come across this post via Google, thus ensuring that she is well protected when dealing with her wedding vendors.

So without further ado, here are three easy things you can do to prevent yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft when planning your wedding:

  • Keep your marriage license and other personal documents related to your wedding locked in a safe and secure place. Note that your social security number may appear on your marriage license. Even if it won’t, you will still need to know it to obtain that license under Title 42 USC Chapter 7, Subchapter IV, Part D, Sec. 666(a)(13) — try memorize it instead of carting your card around town.
  • Do not give out your social security number when planning a wedding, unless you’re securing a government document, e.g., your marriage license or a new passport, license, and social security card. Give only the minimum amount of personal information to wedding vendors — think name, address, and telephone number. If any wedding vendor asks for your soc, run like hell.
  • Definitively make the decision to either keep your maiden (man?) name or assume your spouse’s name –- using both leaves room for error, as it would be difficult to keep track of where you’re using one versus the other. Plus, it’s just kind of a pain in the ass.

And there you have it, ladies and gents. Be smart with documents and personal info, and decide early on whether you’ll keep or change your surname, and bad wedding vendors out to screw naïve brides and grooms won’t be able to getcha. Like I said, common sense!

One Response to “Protection Basics for Brides and Grooms — No, Not That Kind of Protection”

  1. Twistie says:

    Great tips, NtB, especially that one about not handing out your SSN to vendors. NO vendor has ANY legitimate reason to ask for it. Name, address, phone number, and email, folks. That’s plenty to get and keep in touch with you.