Social Security is a complex program, and many Americans don't completely understand it. Yet it doesn't take too much effort to learn the basics of what you need to know about Social Security.

In the following slideshow, you'll find out about the key elements of Social Security, ranging from how to get a Social Security card to who is eligible for benefits and how much you can expect to get. By taking just a few minutes to look through these eight slides, you'll be a lot clearer about how Social Security can help you retire with more financial security.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.