By Harold B. Wolford
January 22, 2014
Veterans Corner will be a regular column written by veterans for veterans. The intent is to update and inform military veterans of items that may be of interest or concern to veterans.
It was recently reported on local TV news that there is a potential security issue with Department of Veterans Affairs issued ID cards. It was stated that if the bar code on the front of the card is scanned with a smart phone, your social security number will be displayed. While this is a true statement, it is in reality not a huge risk or problem.
I personally tested to determine the extent of the problem. None of the six scanning programs I had on my phone would display my number. After downloading four more programs, I got one that would scan and display. I could not scan the bar code with the card in my wallet sleeve. I had to hold the card close to the camera and steady for 5 to 10 seconds to achieve the scan. By this, I would say there is not a real problem. You can put a piece of PVC or masking tape over the bar code to completely eliminate any concerns.
The VA is aware of the problem and is eliminating the bar code from the cards; and I am told will issue a new card if requested. Any Veterans ID cards from the Franklin County Recorder’s office do not contain social security numbers and are not a risk. I would anticipate when ID cards for veterans are issued through Delaware County; they will not have any issues.
Another reason to visit our Veterans Service Office (located at 149 North Sandusky Street in Delaware) is to inquire about your veterans benefits; sign up. Get involved, you’ll be glad you did.
Thank you for your service.