To help blunt the frequency of identity theft, lawmakers need to address gaps in federal requirements for safeguarding Social Security numbers shared with private-sector contractors, according to a study by the Government Accountability Office.

In its report, the GAO examined how certain industries share consumer SSNs with contractors; the safeguards and notable industry standards in place to ensure protection of Social Security numbers when shared with contractors; and how federal agencies regulate and monitor the sharing and safeguarding of Social Security numbers between private entities and their contractors.

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