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Social Security still a sticky issue

The Internet may very well be a revolutionary medium, but nothing revolts its users more than issues concerning personal data such as Social Security numbers.

The Social Security Administration announced today that it will reopen its Web site to allow taxpayers to access its information via the Internet. Although it says it has learned from its previous effort and reached out to privacy experts, consumer advocates, and Netizens for input, it will be venturing again into one of the most delicate aspects of cyberspace and the Information Age: ensuring that personal information is safe and accessible to its rightful owners and users. The question remains whether it or other government and commercial firms will get the benefit of the doubt.

Social Security info back online
By Erich Leuning
update The Social Security Administration reinstates a Web site shuttered in April following privacy concerns, giving taxpayers access to benefits calculations.

Colleges assailed for SSN use
By Courtney Macavinta
When Valerie Kurkas learned her university email address would contain the last six digits of her Social Security number, she opted for a another account instead.

Credit reports taken off Net
By Alex Lash
update Just one day after launching its online credit reports, Experian pulls the service off the Web because of technical problems.

Lexis-Nexis to let public see files
By Jeff Pelline
Amid concern about the invasion of privacy online, Lexis-Nexis agrees to let members of the public see information about them on file.

Lawmakers address online privacy
By Courtney Macavinta
news analysis The House continues its efforts to batten down the online hatches on Social Security numbers.

Social Security site closed
By Janet Kornblum

update The Social Security Administration bows to pressure and closes a site that lets people look up their work histories.