Accounts Reported without Social Security Number

Couple reading over contract in office
Dear Experian,

Can a credit agency post something on my credit report without my Social Security number?


Dear KOK,

Yes, they can. Experian doesn't match information to a person's credit history using only the Social Security number. Experian matches information using all of the identification information provided by the lender, so the account will be accurately shown in your report, even if no Social Security number is provided.

In some cases, variations from the consumer's correct Social Security number may be reported to Experian. Experian lists every variation reported to it. Any variations listed under "Social Security number variations" in your credit report are not errors. Instead, they are an accurate representation of all of the numbers being reported to Experian as belonging to you.

It is important to list the variations because they could indicate you are a victim of fraud or identity theft. In most cases they are simply the result of a transposed digit or typographical error. Some people may provide an incorrect Social Security number in the misbelief that doing so helps protect them from fraud. However, in some cases they are the result of identity theft. By listing the variations, we enable you to recognize fraud and take immediate action.

Thanks for asking.
The "Ask Experian" team

The purpose of this question submission tool is to provide general education on credit reporting. The Ask Experian team cannot respond to each question individually. However, if your question is of interest to a wide audience of consumers, the Experian team may include it in a future post and may also share responses in its social media outreach. If you have a question, others likely have the same question, too. By sharing your questions and our answers, we can help others as well.

Personal credit report disputes cannot be submitted through Ask Experian. To dispute information in your personal credit report, simply follow the instructions provided with it. Your personal credit report includes appropriate contact information including a website address, toll-free telephone number and mailing address.

To submit a dispute online visit Experian's Dispute Center. If you have a current copy of your personal credit report, simply enter the report number where indicated, and follow the instructions provided. If you do not have a current personal report, Experian will provide a free copy when you submit the information requested. Additionally, you may obtain a free copy of your report once a week through December 31, 2022 at AnnualCreditReport.