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Public Records Social Security Number

Additional Information About Ss

Social Security Numbers Posted As Public Record

After you find your ancestor in the Social Security Death Index and the Social Security Applications and Claims Index, you may want to order a copy of their SS-5 Application. The current fee is USD $21 per record when the Social Security Number is known, and USD $21 when the number is unknown or incorrect. You are charged the fee even if the SSA is unable to locate any information on the person. It may take up to six months to receive a report.

The SS-5 application is important to a family history researcher because of the detail it provides. The SS-5 application contains the following information:

  • Applicant’s full name

What Information Does The Number Not Provide

Most significantly, and perhaps surprisingly, criminal records are not tied to SSNs. An individuals criminal charge may or may not include their SSN, so a clean criminal record check using SSN alone is not particularly meaningful. Its a start, but its by no means the whole story. However, using information gleaned from an SSN check that includes names and aliases as well as former addresses, skilled background screeners can search criminal records databases to find evidence of an individuals criminal history. So, while your SSN by itself will not reveal a criminal history, its nonetheless very difficult to run a thorough criminal background check without the additional information provided by a thorough SSN trace.

Disclosure Of Social Security Numbers

It shall be unlawful for any Federal, State or local government agency to deny to any individual any right, benefit, or privilege provided by law because of such individuals refusal to disclose his social security account number.

theprovisions of paragraph of this subsection shall not apply with respect to

any disclosure which is required by Federal statute, or

the disclosure of a social security number to any Federal, State, or local agency maintaining a system of records in existence and operating before January 1, 1975, if such disclosure was required under statute or regulation adopted prior to such date to verify the identity of an individual.

Any Federal, State, or local government agency which requests an individual to disclose his social security account number shall inform that individual whether that disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory or other authority such number is solicited, and what uses will be made of it. Section 7 of the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended, 5 U.S.C. § 552a note ).

Although this provision applies beyond federal agencies, it does not apply to: any disclosure which is required by federal statute or any disclosure of a social security number to any federal, state, or local agency maintaining a system of records in existence and operating before January 1, 1975, if such disclosure was required under statute or regulation adopted prior to such date to verify the identity of an individual. See Sec. 7-.

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Social Security Number Removal

The Orange County Comptroller is making images of documents viewable on his publicly available Internet web site. Therefore, in accordance with Section 119.0714, Florida Statutes, any person has the right to request the Comptroller to redact/remove his or her social security, credit card, charge card, debit card, and/or bank account number from the image or copy of any Official Record that has been placed on the publicly available Internet website.

To locate documents which might contain these numbers, please follow these directions: Go to the Official Records Search page . Click on the ACCEPT button at the bottom of the Disclaimer page, click on Public Search, then do your search by Party Name. The Search Results screen provides the document information needed to complete the Financial Account and Social Security Redaction Form below. You will need to view the specific document by clicking on VIEW. If you find a document on which your own social security, credit card, charge card, debit card, and/or bank account number appears and you would like to request that the numbers be redacted, please fill out the Request to Remove Financial Account and/or Social Security Redaction Form. This form can be printed out and faxed, hand delivered, or mailed to us. Or you can fill the form out online and click the submit button.

Please allow us 2 business days from the date of receipt of your request to comply with your request.

Restrictions On Governmental Collection And Use Of Ssns

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As early as the 1970s, concerns regarding increased uses of the SSN by both government and private entities prompted studies and subsequent congressional action limiting government uses of the SSN. The Social Security Administration created a task force in 1970 to investigate “non-program” uses of the SSN, and the task force’s report the following year stated,

Any examination of SSN policy must begin with the recognition that the number has ceased to be merely a “social security number.” Especially in the past few years, the number has come into increasingly wide use as a numerical identifier throughout society, to the point where the adult American citizen is beginning to need a number to function effectively even if he is among the very small minority of people who never work in covered employment.44

In 1973, the Department of Health, Education and Welfare Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Automated Personal Data Systems proposed that an individual whose SSN is requested should be informed as to whether or not divulging his number is legally required and that no individual should be denied a benefit because of his refusal to divulge his SSN for purposes other than those required by federal law.45

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Dissecting The Social Security Number

The nine digit social security number is grouped into three parts the area number, group number, and serial number.

The Area Number

The area number is the first grouping in the social security number. Originally, the area number indicated the location of the Social Security Administration office where an SSN was issued . Individuals could apply at any office, so the area number was not an indication of where they lived or worked. This changed in 1972 when the Social Security Administration began issuing SSNs from its Baltimore headquarters and assigning area numbers based on the applicants mailing address.

Anyone who applied for a social security number between 1972 and 2011 will have an area number that correlates to the mailing address listed on their application . However, the area number cannot be used to determine residence since you can have mail sent to any location. In 2011, the SSA changed the way area numbers are assigned yet again to a system called randomization. Anyone applying for an SSN after June 25, 2011 has received a randomized area number that has no correlation to any location .

The Group Number

The middle section of numbers is simply there to make administration easier for the SSA. The group number ranges from 01 to 99 and allows Social Security Numbers with the same area number to be broken into smaller pairings. Geographic data is not indicated by the group number.

The Serial Number

Do Social Security Numbers Expire

No social security numbers do not expire. In fact, social security numbers are widely used by people researching their US ancestry as SSNs are not reused and will always be associated with a specific person even after they are deceased.

In extreme situations where an identity has been compromised, a new SSN may be issued by the Social Security Administration.

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Checkr Ssn Trace Process

A Social Security number Trace searches databases for a particular name and Social Security number. The trace returns jurisdictions where a match is found and also searches identified alternative names, such as aliases or AKAs, if your package configuration includes aliases.

To run an SSN Trace, Checkr submits the candidate’s name and SSN to a data provider that then generates a report from market-leading sources for address and alias information. This report returns information about known names and addresses for the SSN, compiled from credit and banking history for the given SSN.

SSN Traces are used as a “pointer” to possible criminal records. The SSN Trace result identifies additional counties and databases to search for public records associated with the candidate’s personally identifiable information . If your package configuration includes aliases, address and alias information from the SSN Trace can then guide additional searches.

The SSN Trace can provide the information below:

  • An indication of the SSN’s validity
  • Address history associated with the SSN
  • If your package configuration includes aliases, a list of previous names, which could be birth names or aliases such as nicknames

Because the SSN Trace is a pointer search, aimed at casting a wide net to identify records associated with the candidates PII, SSN Trace results alone aren’t reportable. SSN Trace results shouldn’t be used for Federal Credit Reporting Act purposes.

Your Social Security Number Is The Key

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Originally, your Social Security number was a way for the government to track your earnings and pay you retirement benefits. But over the years, it has become much more than that. It is the key to a lot of your personal information. With your name and SSN, an identity thief could open new credit and bank accounts, rent an apartment, or even get a job.

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Can You Look Someone Up By Their Social Security Number

Yes, you can look someone up by their social security number, but it depends on what youre trying to do. With a name and social security number, you can run background checks and check public records. If you only have a social security number with no name, you wont be able to do much more than verify that its an authentic SSN issued by the Social Security Administration.

What Information Does The Number Provide

First and foremost, your social security number is used to verify your identity. Your social security number is attached to one name and one birthday. If you have a common name, say like John Smith, your SSN, birthday, middle name, and other corresponding information such as drivers license number and addresses youve lived together confirm that you are the John Smith in question.

Second, since social security numbers are used to track many types of personal transactions, a background check searches a variety of sources to pull up information on an individual. Accurate Backgrounds Social Security Trace and Address History search goes back seven years and identifies information including current addresses, all addresses where an applicant has lived, name summaries and variations, date of birth, etc. SSN searches will also reveal your work history and credit information such as foreclosures and bankruptcies.

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Social Security Number Privacy

The Social Security Number was created in 1936 as a nine-digit account number assigned by the Secretary of Health and Human Services for the purpose of administering the Social Security laws. SSNs were initially intended for use exclusively by the federal government as a means of tracking earnings to determine Social Security tax amounts to be credited to workers accounts. Over time, SSN use expanded to purposes entirely unrelated to the administration of the Social Security system, such as taxpayer identification numbers. In response to growing concerns over mass personal information accumulation, the Privacy Act of 1974 was passed. Among other items, the Act makes it unlawful for a government agency to deny a right, benefit, or privilege merely because the individual refuses to disclose their SSN. Further, Section 7 of the Privacy Act provides that any agency requesting an individual to disclose his SSN must inform the individual whether disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory authority the number is being solicited, and how it will be used.

Its Ultimately About Trust

Death Records

Employers primarily run background checks as a baseline for establishing trust with a new employee. While a social security number does not tell the whole story, it provides a crucial foundation for verifying identity and building critical trust, without which any background report is essentially unreliable.

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Can You Look Up A Ssn

You cant look up an SSN for someone else unless they have beendeceased for more than 3 years using the Social Security Death Index . It is possible to check whetheran SSN is valid as long as you have the complete number and – if youre trying to find out yourown SSN – the Social Security Administration can help.

Can You Find Someone By Their Social Security Number For Free

Most social security number searches come at a cost and can only be performed for official purposes. The first three digits of social security numbers issued before 2011 known as the area numbers can tell you where a social security number has been issued and as its estimated that 50% of people spend their lives in the state where they were born thats a start. With a little more information such as a first and last name its much easier to find someone .

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Citizenship And Social Security Numbers

Even though individuals are required to disclose their SSN under many circumstances in dealing with governmental entities, possession of an SSN is not a condition of U.S. citizenship. U.S. citizens are not required to be enumerated at birth.12 This is why regulations issued by the Social Security Administration regarding obtaining an SSN state that “n individual needing a social security number may apply for one by filing a signed form SS-5, ‘Application For A Social Security Number Card,’ … “13 Each individual determines when he or she needs a number based upon federal and state statutes requiring disclosure of an SSN.

In reality, it would be very difficult to work or engage in many activities in this country without an SSN. Virtually all tax matters require the disclosure of one’s SSN,14 as does participation in many government programs, and obtaining a driver’s license. While one may choose not to disclose an SSN in some circumstances, one may have to forgo a benefit. For example, a parent can refuse to provide an SSN for a child on an income tax form, but then the parent cannot claim a tax credit for that dependent child.15

Texas Law Allows Residents Sensitive Personal Information To Be Exposed On County Websites

Social security number access

You can read this story in Spanish by .

Editors note: Texas Public Radio did not mention specific document types or the names of most affected individuals in order to protect peoples privacy and not disclose methods through which people could access unredacted social security numbers. Nor did TPR name all counties with exposures or those that did not respond to comment. TPR tried to only name counties that redacted or are actively working to redact documents with social security number exposures.

For more than a decade, some Texas county clerks offices have left thousands of unredacted social security numbers online exposing people to COVID relief fund theft and other identity crimes. County clerks never told people they were exposed, and the state government hasnt prioritized protecting this crucial piece of their personal information.

Even county clerks are at risk.

Hidalgo County Clerk Arturo Guajardo Jr. waited to see the printed screenshot of a document found on his departments public records website which anyone can access.

Let me see it. Are you sure it’s mine?, he said. Unbeknownst to him, his own office had uploaded a document without redacting his social security number. Texas Public Radio had previously contacted Guajardo to notify him of the exposure.

I remember you telling me that. Wow, that is my number, he said in disbelief after looking at the document. He laughed. Im filling out the form right after this, he said.

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Is There A Totally Free Background Check

Although theres a lot of information available online – and a lot ofinformation found on a background check are considered public records – a free backgroundcheck that includes every bit of information doesn’t exist. If youre looking for particularpublic records – such as criminal records – its possible to find that information online forfree . If you need a background check for an official purpose – such asemployment, housing, or for a credit decision – youre absolutely going to have to pay for it asthese are specially regulated.

Why Am I Receiving The Message You Do Not Have Permission To View This Document

In district and bankruptcy courts:

Electronic access to Social Security Administration case documents is limited to parties in the case. In addition, documents from criminal cases filed prior to November 1, 2004, are only available electronically to the parties in the case. Contact the clerk’s office for information about viewing copies. Criminal documents filed after November 1, 2004, are available electronically through PACER.

In appellate courts:

Viewing certain document types in an appellate CM/ECF court may be restricted.

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How To Match A Social Security Number With A Name

Social security numbers can be matched with a name by using an FCRA approved background check or approved credit check. Social security numbers are issued by the Social Security Administration and have become the main identifier for US taxation and other official purposes. SSNs are used as a way of verifying identity for things like background checks, tenancy, bank loans, and credit purposes. There are only select authorized purposes for requesting this information and they almost always require the approval of the person being researched.

Motion To Classify A Record As Non


If the non-public information in a document is so pervasive that it cannot conveniently be redacted, or if filing the non-public information is the primary purpose of the document, file a motion to classify the record as private . See Rule 4-202.04.

Do not confuse this with asking the court to “seal” the record. Sealed records are rare, such as adoption records and expunged criminal records. Private and protected records are kept secure from public view, but a sealed record is physically sealed, and no one, not even a party, can view or copy the record without a court order. See Rule 4-202.02, Rule 4-202.03, and Rule 4-205.

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