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Discussion Starter #1
I am just.....flabbergasted......

I received an email yesterday from SSA. Because of all the hacking going on they are stepping up their authentication process to access your on-line account. This new process starting next month will require you to enter your cell phone number during the log in process - then the computer will send you a text with a code that you will enter into the next screen to gain access to your account. This process will happen each time you log in (with a different texted code).

I have no cell service.

I need to access and print a couple documents a couple times a year. So now what am I supposed to do? I wrote to SSA about this - awaiting a response.

So is it now assumed that ever single person in the US has a cell phone? What about older folks - do they all have cell phones? Even if I did have cell service I have no reason whatsoever to own one. The expense ($20+?) would be just thrown out the window.
 

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I am just.....flabbergasted......

I received an email yesterday from SSA. Because of all the hacking going on they are stepping up their authentication process to access your on-line account. This new process starting next month will require you to enter your cell phone number during the log in process - then the computer will send you a text with a code that you will enter into the next screen to gain access to your account. This process will happen each time you log in (with a different texted code).

I have no cell service.

I need to access and print a couple documents a couple times a year. So now what am I supposed to do? I wrote to SSA about this - awaiting a response.

So is it now assumed that ever single person in the US has a cell phone? What about older folks - do they all have cell phones? Even if I did have cell service I have no reason whatsoever to own one. The expense ($20+?) would be just thrown out the window.
Stan - flags should be going up...this sounds like a scam. Anyone else hear of this...I haven't.
 

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Stan,

It's called 2 factor authentication, you know a user name and a password, you register a device with them, they send a one time code to validate your the actual person logging in in hopes that you haven't given your cell phone to the hacker. A lot of systems are using this method at this point, Pay Pal implemented this a short time ago, Microsoft has had it on the volume license download site for several years.

Call the local SSI office and validate the request sent in email is not a scam and ask them an alternative solution for people that don't have cell phones.

You could always see if you can get one of these for "free". Obama Phone

Of course, I may have just doomed this thread to the political forum..... :unknown:
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Stan - flags should be going up...this sounds like a scam. Anyone else hear of this...I haven't.
Before I posted I looked for an article on-line and couldn't fine one. I would have expected that I wouldn't be the only one screaming......
 

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Yeah I agree that is kind of dumb. While a lot of places are starting to require two factor authentication, forcing that on the older generation is kind of dumb.

I was trying to think of a solution which might help you and the best one that I can think of is Google Voice. If you have a GMail Account you can sign up for a Google Voice number. The way Google Voice works is you tag it to another number or multiple numbers. Now I have a cell phone so I haven't tried doing what you are trying to do but if someone calls my Google Voice number based on the day and time of day it will ring my cell phone, my work desk and/or my home phone and I can answer it at any of the locations. Also if I am mid call (provided it was initiated as a Google Voice call) I can even hit a couple buttons and flip the call from my desk at work to my cell.

Anyhow where I think this might help is you can sign up for Google Voice, tie it to your home number. When you register you pick what area code you want your phone number to be in and they assign you a number. That Google Voice phone number is SMS (text message) enabled. So you could give that Google Voice number to SSA. When you go to log into the system and it sends the verification to your "cell phone" you will get an email in your gmail inbox. So you could log into that and get the verification code.

Again this is free so you could try and set it up and see if it works and if you like it or not. You just need a Gmail Account. The only gotcha is if you have to have a cell phone to sign up. I don't think you do. I do recall a requirement but I am almost positive that it requires a landline of some sort, not a cell phone so I think you will be fine.

https://www.google.com/voice

I do agree with you that the requirement is dumb. They need to find some other way of doing two factor authentication.
 

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I also agree that you should verify that this is legit.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah I agree that is kind of dumb. While a lot of places are starting to require two factor authentication, forcing that on the older generation is kind of dumb.

I was trying to think of a solution which might help you and the best one that I can think of is Google Voice. If you have a GMail Account you can sign up for a Google Voice number. The way Google Voice works is you tag it to another number or multiple numbers. Now I have a cell phone so I haven't tried doing what you are trying to do but if someone calls my Google Voice number based on the day and time of day it will ring my cell phone, my work desk and/or my home phone and I can answer it at any of the locations. Also if I am mid call (provided it was initiated as a Google Voice call) I can even hit a couple buttons and flip the call from my desk at work to my cell.

Anyhow where I think this might help is you can sign up for Google Voice, tie it to your home number. When you register you pick what area code you want your phone number to be in and they assign you a number. That Google Voice phone number is SMS (text message) enabled. So you could give that Google Voice number to SSA. When you go to log into the system and it sends the verification to your "cell phone" you will get an email in your gmail inbox. So you could log into that and get the verification code.

Again this is free so you could try and set it up and see if it works and if you like it or not. You just need a Gmail Account. The only gotcha is if you have to have a cell phone to sign up. I don't think you do. I do recall a requirement but I am almost positive that it requires a landline of some sort, not a cell phone so I think you will be fine.

https://www.google.com/voice

I do agree with you that the requirement is dumb. They need to find some other way of doing two factor authentication.
Thank you!

While I was eating breakfast I thought about this - that something in the Google tool box might work.

Awesome - this makes me feel better. It is kind of important for me to print those documents when I need them.

And yes, I see more of the multi-level authentication happening also - it has to come to this with just about everything being accessed over the internet.
 

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If you have internet access, why not send the code to your email or a different email not used on their site? Just a thought! The digital world is moving so fast, younger folks do not understand the days when we had party lines. LOL! Even though I work in IT, I do not like how fast it is moving. Mostly due to the fact they have not yet figured out how to secure this stuff.
 

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Stan,

SSA 2 factor is listed on their site as an optional enhanced security measure, call or visit the local office to validate your not being scammed.

ssa login.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #12
If you have internet access, why not send the code to your email or a different email not used on their site? Just a thought!
The email specifically states you will have to enter a cell phone number to receive the code via text.

Here is the header from the email (with my address x'ed out)

from: Social Security Administration <[email protected]>
reply-to: [email protected]
to: XXXXXXXXX
date: Thu, Jul 28, 2016 at 7:01 PM
subject: Link Correction: New step to protect your privacy using my Social Security
mailed-by: subscriptions.ssa.gov
signed-by: subscriptions.ssa.gov
encryption: govdelivery.com did not encrypt this message Learn more

And the body of the text:

Starting in August 2016, Social Security is adding a new step to protect your privacy as a my Social Security user. This new requirement is the result of an executive order for federal agencies to provide more secure authentication for their online services. Any agency that provides online access to a customer’s personal information must use multifactor authentication.

When you sign in at ssa.gov/myaccount with your username and password, we will ask you to add your text-enabled cell phone number. The purpose of providing your cell phone number is that, each time you log in to your account with your username and password, we will send you a one-time security code you must also enter to log in successfully to your account.

Each time you sign into your account, you will complete two steps:

Step 1: Enter your username and password.
Step 2: Enter the security code we text to your cell phone (cell phone provider's text message and data rates may apply).
The process of using a one-time security code in addition to a username and password is one form of “multifactor authentication,” which means we are using more than one method to make sure you are the actual owner of your account.

If you do not have a text-enabled cell phone or you do not wish to provide your cell phone number, you will not be able to access your my Social Security account.

If you are unable or choose not to use my Social Security, there are other ways you can contact us. To learn more, please review the Frequently Asked Questions found here.
 

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Most people have cell phones these days. I got rid of my land line a few years ago as I seldom used my home phone.
 

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Most people have cell phones these days. I got rid of my land line a few years ago as I seldom used my home phone.
There are some of us that will never have one.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Most people have cell phones these days. I got rid of my land line a few years ago as I seldom used my home phone.
Most people. As I stated in my OP I do not have cell service where I live.

There are some of us that will never have one.
Once again Randy we are much alike. Even if I did have cell service I find no reason to have one. I think they are a plague to our society.
 

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I got the same email today. I think it is legit.

Sent from my Sprint HTC One
 

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I still think the Google Voice option would be the best option as it is free and requires no hardware. However, I don't know what you have for technology but I thought I would throw this out there. If it doesn't help you maybe it would help someone else.

If you have an iPad or iPod that doesn't have cell service so no phone number. There is an app that can be installed to send and receive text messages where kind of like Google Voice you are assigned a virtual cell phone number. I only know this because we put the app on my daughter's iPod. Because it is an iPod and not an iPhone there is no phone number on it. I am not an Apple user so you might think I would know what the Android equivalent is and I am sure there is one, but being I have had Android phones since the G1 I don't know what it would be as I have no use for it. I also don't know the name of the app for Apple off the top of my head as I don't use their stuff but I know it exists. I also want to say there is no cost for this other than having to get the hardware (iPad or iPod) unless you already have it.

So if you have an iPad or iPod with wifi connection to the internet it is another option.

Mainly throwing this out there because some people are as anti-Google as I am anti-Apple. It also might be easier to set up for someone that doesn't have a Gmail account but happens to have an iPad or iPod. I do know many older people have bought iPads rather than having a full computer around as they are pretty easy to use for basic looking something up on the internet and email.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I still think the Google Voice option would be the best option as it is free and requires no hardware. However, I don't know what you have for technology but I thought I would throw this out there. If it doesn't help you maybe it would help someone else.

If you have an iPad or iPod that doesn't have cell service so no phone number. There is an app that can be installed to send and receive text messages where kind of like Google Voice you are assigned a virtual cell phone number. I only know this because we put the app on my daughter's iPod. Because it is an iPod and not an iPhone there is no phone number on it. I am not an Apple user so you might think I would know what the Android equivalent is and I am sure there is one, but being I have had Android phones since the G1 I don't know what it would be as I have no use for it. I also don't know the name of the app for Apple off the top of my head as I don't use their stuff but I know it exists. I also want to say there is no cost for this other than having to get the hardware (iPad or iPod) unless you already have it.

So if you have an iPad or iPod with wifi connection to the internet it is another option.

Mainly throwing this out there because some people are as anti-Google as I am anti-Apple. It also might be easier to set up for someone that doesn't have a Gmail account but happens to have an iPad or iPod. I do know many older people have bought iPads rather than having a full computer around as they are pretty easy to use for basic looking something up on the internet and email.
Again, thank you! I use my iPad (wi-fi only) all the time in my chair. Not afraid of Google but I think an iPad app will be easier to use.

I'll take a look at the apps.
 

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Not good!

I have a cell phone, but have "data" blocked out because AT&T kept texting me to sell something & then charged me for the text!
 
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