Is It Safe To Give PayPal My SSN?

PayPal requires you to provide certain details after you open an account with the platform in order to verify your identity. Sometimes, you may be required to submit your SSN. Today’s article is about one of PayPal’s most frequently asked questions, “Is it safe to give PayPal my SSN?”

I understand why you may be skeptical about giving PayPal your SSN but your SSN is safe with PayPal. PayPal has several measures in place to protect users’ information. 

Your SSN is key to your identity and it’s important you guard it jealously. And I understand the reluctance PayPal users exhibit when they are asked to submit their SSNs. In this article, I’ll be talking about when and why PayPal may require you to submit your SSN and whether it’s safe to submit your SSN to PayPal or not. 

Do I Have to Give PayPal my Social Security Number (SSN)?

After opening a PayPal account, you’ll be required to add your bank account, credit or debit card details, and contact information. This information will be used to verify your identity and this helps keep PayPal safe as other people will know you are who you say you are. This helps build trust in the PayPal ecosystem. 

PayPal doesn’t usually request for SSN unless you are using a business account. So as a personal account user, your identity will most likely be verified through a bank account. You need to provide proof of your identity before you were able to open your bank account. So PayPal will take advantage of the fact that your bank has already verified your identity. And that’s why PayPal requires users to link their bank account(s). Usually, you’ll have no need to give your SSN. 

But in case you are required to submit your SSN, sometimes just the last four digits, you’ll have to submit it. There is no way around this. However, if you have a business account, you java the option of submitting an Employer Identification Number (EIN). 

After verifying your account, you have the option of using your linked bank account, linked credit/debit card, or your PayPal balance as your preferred method of payment. One of the reasons why Paypal is popular because it offers protection to both buyers and sellers. Buyer’s protection has helped a lot of buyers to get a refund especially when they received damaged products or products different from what they offered. Seller’s protection also helps protect sellers from being scammed but the general consensus is that PayPal is slightly biased to buyers than sellers. 

Why Does PayPal Ask for SSN?

I think it’s first important for me to explain why PayPal asks for SSN. The reason PayPal asks for SSN is that it needs the data for sales or credit information. Buyers don’t really need to provide their SSNs and that’s why PayPal verifies the identities of buyers. So you are not legally obligated to supply your SSN as a buyer. 

If you are a seller on PayPal and make sales worth over $20,000 per year and/or have 200 selling transactions annually  (whichever happens first)`, then you are required to submit your SSN by PayPal. You can provide your EIN in place of your SSN. The reason why PayPal requires sellers who have met the above criteria to provide their SSNs is that the IRS requires PayPal to send them senders that have recorded 200 transactions AND sell $20,000 or more in services or products an IRS form 1099. Your income should be reported at this level. This is the reason for PayPal requiring SSN.

As a buyer on PayPal, you are not required to submit your SSN unless when applying for PayPal credit. Even when applying for a line of credit through PayPal credit, you’ll only be required by PayPal to submit only the last four digits of your SSN. However, you’ll have to submit your entire SSN when you apply for a PayPal debit MasterCard. 

Can I trust PayPal with my SSN?

Yes, you can trust PayPal with your account. PayPal has a good reputation when it comes to keeping users’ data safe. I’m also glad to inform you that Paypal has never been hacked and it would seem to remain so for the foreseeable future. 

PayPal keeps your data safe in secure databases that are virtually unhacked. There are harmed security guarding the location of the servers so no one can have physical access to the servers. Also, PayPal automatically encrypts your information when it’s stored or transmitted. Your data can’t be intercepted when you send it from your devices to PayPal. PayPal doesn’t share your payment details when you buy or pay for things online. This is another advantage of paying through PayPal as you won’t have to enter your card details a lot on the internet. 

For you to know how serious PayPal is about your most sensitive data (bank account numbers, credit card numbers), even PayPal’s employees only see the information necessary to help you. For example, they can only see the last 4 digits of your financial account numbers. And the details of the location of PayPal’s databases or details related to their security systems, algorithms, or encryption systems are kept highly confidential. 

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