Keeping firearm serial numbers secret

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Jan 3, 2006
What's all the gripe about providing firearm serial numbers to an insurance provider? Collectables insurance advertises that they don't require this information and I've seen many a post where people complain that so and so insurance requires this information.

I guess the insurance provider could get subpoenaed to provide the information they have. I like the idea of storing this information in a secure and remote location. Thoughts?
House gets broken into LEs want to know if you have serial numbers so they can put them in the report and their data base because your thieves are gonna pawn them even though they know the pawn shops are supposed to report the numbers. Insurance companies are so different with their coverage and policies that many of the things we believe are taken care of come back later unsatisfactory.
Some people are hypersensitve and paranoid.

You should always store information in a secure location. For property insurance, I document with video.... saves a lot of time and leaves little room for argument.

Let's see, just about every day I read a report of thousands of pieces of personal data are 'lost' or 'stolen' from business or government laptops or databases. These companies have employees, and I don't know who those people are or what background checks they went through. Could they sell that data to thieves? The less people know the better.

If I were a gun thief or jewel thief, or whatever, I would infiltrate and bribe employees at those companies to get intel on who has what.

I'm not interested in having a convenient list of my guns and serial numbers floating around in the world. Not to mention, I don't have to inventory everything else in my house with serial numbers, so why can't an insurance company insure my guns like it does my bed, couch, tv, etc?

And those numbers, once given, are like genies out of a bottle. You bet the .gov can subpoena that information if it wants it.
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I DO record pics & numbers. I DO store at a remote location. I DON'T have anything relating to me or their location. Am I paranoid, yes.
I work in IT and can tell you that computer systems are compromised more often than most people realize-- sometimes without the knowledge of even the owners. The fewer databases in which you have your personal information recorded, the better.
I had the Birmingham(Al.)Police tell me when one of my handguns had been stolen,that just knowing the serial number was not proof of ownership. I would have to produce a bill-of-sale with the serial number on it to claim my property. He then proceeded to tell me that it wouldn't matter anyway "since we don't give back guns".
What's all the gripe about providing firearm serial numbers to an insurance provider?
Never been asked to provide them by State Farm.

that just knowing the serial number was not proof of ownership
A serial number is not sufficent information for entry into the Stolen Gun file of the NCIC system. Serial number are not unique. Additional identifiers are required for acceptance.

Insurance companies will want to see proof of ownership. As a friend recently went through it after a major house fire, they want proof for payment of the claim.
Too often I see pics posted of guns with the SN front and center, not a good idea.

I have taken pics of all guns, with any unique descriptions and SN's. They are on two CD's and one is in a safety deposit box, the other is in a "WELL" concealed place.
No one knows the serial numbers of my guns except me. Those numbers are hidden in a very good place. If the guns get stolen, I'm SOL 'cause I refuse to give the numbers to my insurance company. All I have is the $1m from the NRA and $1500 from my home-owners insurance. That's all they'll cover unless I give them the serial #'s. Soooo, $2500 is what I'll get back.

Many of my guns were purchased by my dad or when I was quite young and have no serial numbers on them.
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