About the Office
Defense Privacy Board Advisory Opinions
THE SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER ON BUILDING AND INSTALLATION BADGES
A Social Security number (SSN) on a building or identification badge required to be prominently displayed or worn at all times by an individual constitutes information about the individual under the Privacy Act. The SSN, with an individual's name, is a record. 5 U.S.C. § 552a(a)(4). This information, when displayed on an exposed identification badge, is observable by any passer–by who may not be an officer or employee officially concerned with the intended use of the badge. It amounts to a constant verification by the individual that information about him or her being displayed is true. Therefore, unless the SSN on a building pass or identification badge is essential, it should not be included when such passes or badges are issued, reissued, or replaced.