From Typewriters to Megabytes – Social Security’s Evolution

~ By Monica Ochoa ~

Monica Ochoa

Monica Ochoa
Social Security Administration

The first typewriter to be commercially successful was invented on June 23, 1868. One hundred years later, Social Security still used the same technology to type Social Security cards, envelopes, forms, and applications. This system required thousands of employees to create, maintain, transmit, and file the folder for each current and future beneficiary by hand to ensure accurate payments to retirees and disability beneficiaries.

Of course, that has all changed with modern computers and the Internet. Now, you don’t even need to leave the comfort of your home to do the majority of your business with Social Security. Your first step in embracing the future is creating your own, personal my Social Security account.

Setting up a my Social Security account is quick, secure, and easy. More than 18 million Americans already have accounts. In fact, someone opens one about every 6 seconds. Join the crowd and sign up today at With a personalized my Social Security account, you can:

  • Obtain an instant, personalized estimate of your future Social Security benefits;
  • Verify the accuracy of your earnings record – your future benefit amounts are based on your earnings record;
  • Change your address and phone number, if you receive monthly Social Security benefits;
  • Sign up for or change direct deposit of your Social Security benefits;
  • Get a replacement SSA-1099 or SSA-1042S for tax season; and
  • Obtain estimates of the Social Security and Medicare taxes you’ve paid.

Here are some other things you can do with a few simple key strokes at our website,

  • Apply for retirement, disability, spouses, and Medicare benefits;
  • Check the status of your benefit application;
  • Use our benefit planners to help you better understand your Social Security options as you plan for your financial future;
  • Request a replacement Medicare card; and
  • Apply for Extra Help with your Medicare prescription drug plan costs.

Accessing on the go is just as easy as it is at home. We’ve optimized our website to function on your desktop computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

Just look at how far we’ve come. Those slow days of typewriters are gone. At Social Security, we’re embracing innovation and seeking new technologies to better serve you. Social Security isn’t just prepared for the future; we’re protecting your future.
Learn more about Social Security by typing Ñ in your web browser, not on your typewriter.

Warning: A non-numeric value encountered in /home/customer/www/ on line 499