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article imageSeniors, don't text? — You will be locked out of Social Security

By Karen Graham     Aug 6, 2016 in Internet
For some senior citizens, their lack of texting skills are locking them out their Social Security accounts online because of a new security measure added this week.
A new security measure was added this week that requires users to enter a code along with their username and password before they can access their account. But the new measure has some senior citizens up in arms, says Fox News.
Some people may be familiar with the practice. When you enter your username and password, a text message and a code are sent to your cell phone. You then enter the code in order to access your account. Social Security requires a new code each time you access your account because the code is only good for 10 minutes.
On its website, Social Security explains that the added security measure was added to comply with an executive order requiring federal agencies to beef up their online security measures. This particular security measure is used by most financial institutions with online account activity.
But many senior citizens, including those who may have Internet access, don't have cell phones that receive text messaging. Social Security admits that this is a problem, but currently, there is not anything thing they can do about it. Fortunately, this does not stop Social Security recipients from getting their benefits.
The online Social Security account is where a person can go to change their address, start or change the method of payment for benefits or get a replacement social security card if the original card is lost. For those who haven't retired yet, the account can show an estimate of future benefit payments.
Almost 26 million people have logged in and created an account since it became available in 2012, the Social Security Administration said on its blog on Wednesday. But the blog drew over 100 comments, most of them from people upset by the change.
“I have a basic cell phone that is only used for emergencies. No way to receive a text message with a code to use. Please rethink this or add an alternative,” wrote one person.
It is interesting to note that according to a 2015 study by the Pew Research Center, 91 percent of adults in the U.S. own cell phones, and 76 percent of those adults age 65 or older own cell phones.
More about social security account, Seniors, Texting, security code, Online services
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