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Protecting one's SSN following a suspected compromise

I am concerned about the recent news concerning the UH Parking Office database hack.  It's possible that my information and that of several other people I know may have been affected.

UH Database Security Breach Puts Thousands At Risk

Does anyone have any suggestions on what one can do to protect one's identity or SSN following a suspected compromise of one's SSN?

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basic info, but it's a start -- particularly regarding opening new credit cards

Shameless tangent:

Why does the UH Parking Office need your SS#?

I'm also baffled at how many other agencies need it.

Maybe it should be like the standard for insurance companies/credit cards/etc where if anybody ever changes your information (shipping address, for example), you receive a notification via email.

Maybe you should have an email on file with the SS administration so that if anybody uses your SS# to do anything, it is required by law that you're notified -- and accordingly, permission must be requested to use SS #'s in a place of business and it should require expensive security that is highly regulated.

Either the SS# is a secret or it's not, but we simultaneously have to give it out all the time and then STILL worry about all the people who have it....

Is the SS# really just a crutch for a unique ID for most of these organizations or do they really need to tie into some federal database regarding me?

not just ranting....sincerely looking for answers here -- The juxtaposition of "hundreds of agencies/businesses require this" and "it's really bad if somebody else finds out" is causing me problems.

Speaking just from my own experience/observation - It's mostly a crutch.

It's a bit more complex than that.. often you have a web of .. let's say.. cascading requirements?

So Widget company needs an SSN on someone because Sprocket agency requires it.. because Kitten Corporation requires it.. and so on. It's still really just laziness though!

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