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Credit Header Social Security Trace

What Is Credit Header

What is a Social Security Number (SSN) Trace?

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

When youre looking for more information about a customer or vendor, there are a number of pieces of information you might need to find. Credit header data is a great way to gather a significant amount of knowledge on a specific client or vendor, which can make it easier to move forward in your professional relationship. However, even with a high-quality credit header search, it can still be difficult to know exactly what you can use credit header data for. Heres everything you need to know about this data.

Using A Social Security Trace Properly

The only way to ensure that you are performing an accurate county-level criminal records search is to search in every jurisdiction the applicant has resided in during a specified period of time . But how do you know which jurisdictions should be searched?

This is where a Social Security number trace comes to the rescue. A Social Security number trace utilizes credit header information, the non-confidential portion of an individuals credit history.

Each time a person uses their Social Security number to apply for credit the address associated with each credit application is tracked and becomes a part of the persons address history. Over time, this creates an address history for the individual, tracking their change in addresses.

This history is extremely useful for identifying the counties of residence for the individual, which informs our researchers on where to perform criminal record searches. After all counties of residence have been identified through the Social Security number trace, we initiate a request for a misdemeanor and felony record search in each relevant jurisdiction.

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Orange Tree’s Social Security Number Trace

A request is submitted to a major credit bureau for credit header data associated with a consumers social security number. The default credit bureau is CSC/Equifax.

Data returned from the bureau may include addresses and names associated with the social security number in the bureaus database, a range of years during which Social Security Number could have been issued by the Social Security Administration or if it was never issued by the SSA, the state from which the SSN was issued, and when appropriate whether the SSN was issued to an individual now reported by the SSA to be deceased, or issued within the last five years.

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Consent Based Social Security Number Verification

Specific employment environments may necessitate validating the Social Security Number provided by an applicant is their true Social Security Number assigned specifically to them. AccuSource offers the Consent Based Social Security Number Verification to aid employers in validating an applicants SSN directly at the issuing source: the Social Security Administration. Information provided includes original name and any registered alias names identified with the social security number, verification the social security number is still valid and date of issuance.

Why Is There Another Name Associated With My Social Security Number

How long do I have to work to qualify for Disability?

Additional names will frequently be linked to a SSN in the Trace. The most common reasons for this are: 1) Typographical errors 2) Jointly filed public records which list both the subject and the second name 3) Father and son who have the same name and 4) Fraudulent use of a social security number.

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What Does An Ssn Trace Report Show

An SSN trace reveals the following information about a Social Security number:

  • Issuance date from the Social Security Administration
  • The state of issuance
  • Names associated with the number, including maiden names and aliases
  • Addresses associated with the number
  • Validity of the number
  • Date of birth associated with the number

Person Data For Investigations And Skip Trace

USInfoSearch.com is your premier tool for skip tracing, asset location, and person investigations. We provide the best available credit-header data to U.S. Businesses, Government Agencies, and Legal Industry Professionals. Our data is available for all GLBA purposes, including debt collection, skip tracing, legal investigations, ID verification, and more.

Our ProductsSearch billions of records from your desktop, validate identity information, find people, assets, court records and other vital public record information in seconds. We utilize numerous proprietary data sources, including credit header databases, to give you the most accurate and most current results. We provide high quality investigative data solutions for due diligence, collections, skip tracing, ID verification, and more.

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What An Ssn Trace Doesnt Do

Although an SSN trace provides the names and addresses that are associated with a Social Security number, it does not confirm if the Social Security number actually belongs to the applicant.

Mistakes or fraud could result in incorrect addresses or names becoming associated with an applicants Social Security number.

An SSN trace also doesnt provide comprehensive information about an applicant such education or employment history.

It is therefore crucial that you conduct additional searches to verify the information reported by an applicant.

Obtain A Complete Address History

SSN – Social Security Number Trace- Background Checks Demystified

Some candidates will fail to include all of their previous addresses when they fill out employment background screening authorizations.

Completing an SSN trace reveals the addresses associated with a candidates Social Security number, helping to fill in the gaps.

When the revealed address history includes more addresses than what a candidate reported, it can direct a screening analyst to additional counties and states to search beyond the location where the candidate currently lives.

When there are unexplained gaps in an applicants address history, a Social Security number trace report can also show the need to perform more research about where an applicant has lived to identify other state and county databases that should be searched.

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What Is Ssn Validation

VALIDATION: Validation means the Social Security Number is a valid number. … Verification means that the Social Security Administration actually says that the number has been issued to a particular person, the state of issue has been provided by the SSA, and the year of issue has been provided by the SSA.

Who Can Use Credit Header Data

Credit header data is great for a variety of industries and professionals. Thats because credit header data stretches across all sorts of pieces of information. No matter who you are, theres a pretty good chance youre going to be able to use credit header data to push your company a little bit further because of the various implications for credit header data.For example, as a large corporation, you may need to make sure only certain people are able to see specific information. Credit header data can help you with identity verification and authentication, ensuring that only the right people are going to get through to the information in question. With credit header data, it becomes much easier to understand customers.

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It Can Uncover Fraudulent And Illegal Activity

Conducting a SSN trace can uncover fraudulent and illegal acts. It can reveal individuals who may be using someone elses SSN to hide criminal activity, a revoked or suspended license, or other sanctions barring them from working in your industry. That kind of fraud may be more common than you think. Some cybersecurity experts believe that most SSNs have been exposed on the dark web or compromised in some way. Conducting a SSN trace is a good way to uncover instances of inappropriate use of a SSN, such as:

  • A fake SSN that has never been issued
  • A SSN that belongs to a deceased individual
  • A SSN that has been used by multiple people

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Social Security Number Trace


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What Is A Ssn Trace

A SSN trace is a database search that provides the year, state of issuance, and address and name history of a particular social security number. It is a critical component of a background check and helps to uncover many more background details than a search by one name or one address. The SSN trace is such a valuable component of background checks that, according to a Professional Background Screening Association survey, 80 percent of organizations that conduct background screening also include a SSN trace for all candidates.

When assessing the value a SSN trace provides, it is important to note what the SSN trace is not. Sometimes a SSN trace can be confused as a method of identity verification. However, although a SSN trace can identify aliases, addresses, and the validity of a specific SSN, it doesnt verify that a SSN belongs to the person who provided it. For this reason, SSN trace is a powerful background screening tool that is best used as part of a broader background screening program.

Ner With A Reliable Background Check Provider

The best way to complete an SSN trace is by working with a reliable employment background check provider like iprospectcheck.

Our extensive resources and cutting-edge research technologies help us to quickly compile SSN trace information and identify all appropriate information sources that should be checked.

We also perform additional searches to ensure you receive a comprehensive picture of your applicants backgrounds, including employment verification, education verification, professional license verification, and more.

When you work with us, you can feel confident in the accuracy of your background check reports and their legal compliance.

At iprospectcheck, we remain current with all changes in employment background check laws and always return FCRA-compliant reports.

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How Far Back Do The Social Security Traces Go

There are three ways of looking at this. Generally speaking, social security searches can go as far back as 10 years. However, the traces usually dont go that far for each applicant or employee.

First of all, how far back a trace goes may be limited by the age of the person being searched. Social Security Numbers are issued when people turn 18. Therefore, the length of time backwards will depend on how long ago the person turned 18. For a person who is 22, for instance, the longest the social security search can go is 4 years.

The second limitation is legal. Most legislations limit the range of background checks to seven years. Anything which happened more than seven years ago isnt supposed to be used as a basis to make employment decisions. As such, must background checking companies limit searches to within the previous seven years.

What Is An Ssn Verification

What is Social Security Number | How to find SSN

An SSN verification, also known as Consent Based Social Security Verification verifies that the social security number holder’s name, date of birth, and social security number directly match the Social Security Administration’s records.

A CBSV returns a match of ‘yes’ or no from the SSA. Results also search the death index and whether the social security number holder has been reported deceased. A special form signed by the applicant is required for this verification.

Schedule a call today to see how Orange Tree can help you create and implement a compliant and thorough background screening program.

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Why Did The Social Security Number Trace Identify An Address Where The Applicant States That They Have Never Lived

Occasionally there are addresses listed on the social security trace that are not prior addresses of the applicant. This normally occurs because of a simple data entry error by one of the thousands of clerks and operators that handle the data. Searching an additional jurisdiction does not hurt the applicant, but merely provides for a more thorough background check.

What Do No Match Results Mean

If the SSN does not match the consumer associated with the SSN, the bureau will return a “no-match” response or a consumer report with a different name.

A “No Match” response should not be considered as notification that the SSN does not belong to the applicant. A “no-match” response could legitimately mean that the applicant has not established credit with this bureau.

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The Fundamentals Of A Social Trace

You’ve heard the term and you suspect you know what it is, but what exactly is a social trace, and why is it important?

Background Report Basics

The social trace is a fundamental tool and part of most employment background checks. Let’s first understand the standard components of a background check to better grasp the function of the social trace.

Typically, an employment background check consists of conducting some or all of the following searches:

  • Criminal Records Search
  • OIG Sanction Check
  • Education Verification
  • Professional References

Each of the above components contributes one puzzle piece to an applicant’s history. But how does an employer or background screening firm know where to look for criminal records or under what names to search? Typically, this information is provided by the applicant or employee in an employment application. That means searching for critical information about the applicant or employee relies exclusively on that individual’s full disclosure.

Obviously, when the applicant wants the employer to verify his/her educational achievements or favorable work history, it’s in his/her best interest to give the employer complete and accurate information to search. But what if the applicant has something to hide or does not want to reveal the complete picture to a potential employer? This is where the social trace serves as a critical tool.

What is a Social Trace?

Social TraceA Tool Not Without Its Shortcomings

The True Value of a Social Trace

Iprospectcheck: Your Trusted Partner For Ssn Trace Reports And Employment Background Checks

What Is Fraud Alert?

An SSN trace should be conducted at the beginning of every pre-employment background check. At iprospectcheck, we perform SSN trace reports and comprehensive employment background checks for businesses across the U.S.

To learn more about the services we provide or to receive a free quote, call us today:

DISCLAIMER: The resources provided here are for educational purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Consult your counsel if you have legal questions related to your specific practices and compliance with applicable laws.

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What Is The Difference Between A Ssn Trace Ssn Validation Ssn Verification And An Eligibility To Work Verification

Social Security Number -based screening products can be some of the most confusing to navigate because there are many different types and they are all used at different times for different purposes. The following guide will break down the most common SSN-based products, what they are used for and when to use them.

SSN & Address Validations

AKA: SSN Trace, Person Search, Credit Header, etc.

It is the search of a database that may contain information about the issuing location, issue date, death index status, names and addresses associated with a specific SSN.

It is not a direct verification with the Social Security Administration that the specific SSN belongs to the person being screened.

Uses: The search can help indicate whether the SSN is likely accurate or not. It is good supplemental tool for locating addresses linked to the applicant that s/he may have omitted from the application purposely and it is also an investigational tool used to determine who to search for and where to look when conducting a criminal record search.

Timing: This search may be conducted pre-hire.

Limitations: Adverse actions should not be taken based on the results of the search, it is an investigational tool. This search does not fulfill post-hire, eligibility to work verification requirements.

SSN Verifications

AKA: Consent Based Social Security Verification , Social Security Number Verification Service

It is not a verification of identity, citizenship or employment eligibility.

Is A Social Security Number Trace Reliable

An SSN trace returns aggregated data and might include inaccurate or incomplete information. It is only as reliable as what is reported to the information sources.

For this reason, an SSN trace should not be used as the only source of information for making hiring decisions and should instead only be used as a starting point for conducting additional employment background checks.

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It Can Determine Applicable Criminal Record Searches

Information returned from a SSN trace can be used to determine applicable criminal record searches. It is helpful to think of the SSN trace as a guide or an arrow it points to many other possible sources of information about a candidate. Whereas a single criminal records search will deliver results for a given name, a SSN trace amplifies those criminal search results by providing all the names and addresses for a specific SSN. That additional information can be used to conduct a more in-depth search of criminal record databases, possibly yielding a more complete search result.

It Can Generate A More Complete Address History And Expose Gaps


Candidates completing background check authorizations may intentionally or unintentionally neglect to include all historical addresses. A SSN trace fills in the blanks by generating a list of a candidates current and past addresses. In some cases, that list may be more complete than what was provided by the candidate. Having a more complete address history for a candidate allows background screeners to determine if it makes sense to conduct a criminal records search for additional locations beyond the candidates current county of residence. A SSN trace can also reveal gaps in a candidates address history, which may require additional research.

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