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Microsoft Excel 2003 Cell Formatting

Automatically Add Dashes to Social Security Numbers

Summary: Excel 2003 can automatically add dashes to a group of keyed Social Security Numbers.

For businesses and entities using Social Security Numbers as account IDs, entering such numbers in a spreadsheet can prove taxing.

Microsoft Excel 2003 has a cell formatting feature that can save a few keystrokes, useful when entering dozens, if not hundreds or thousands of numbers. Instead of typing numbers in the 111-11-1111 format, just key in the numbers and Excel will add the dashes.

1. Select the cells that will contain Social Security Numbers. Or, select a group of cells that already contain such numbers keyed in without the dashes.

2. Select "Format" - "Cells", press CTRL-1, or right-click and choose "Format Cells".

3. The multi-tabbed "Format Cells" dialog box appears. Click the "Number" tab.

4. Underneath "Category", click "Special".

5. Make sure the Locale pull-down says "English (United States)" or similar.

6. Underneath "Type", click "Social Security Number".

7. Click "OK" to close the dialog box.

Applying a Social Security Number style to a group of cells in a Microsoft Excel 2003 spreadsheet

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Last Modified on: August 1, 2008, at 9:26 A.M. EDT

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