The employee screening service E-Verify now has better security that helps prevent identity fraud, announced the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The enhancement to E-Verify helps detect fraudulent use of Social Security numbers (SSNs) used by employers to verify a potential employee’s eligibility to work.
As part of the employment screening process, an employer may enter information into E-Verify that appears valid — such as a matching name, date of birth, and SSN — but was, in fact, stolen, borrowed or purchased from another individual. This new safeguard enables USCIS to lock a SSN that appears to have been misused, protecting it from further misuse in E-Verify. (E-Verify is a Web-based service offered by the Department of Homeland Security that allows employers to verify work eligibility.)
The new feature helps safeguard the E-Verify system by implementing standards that have proven effective in protecting identity. Just as a credit-card company locks a card that appears to have been stolen, the USCIS may now lock SSNs in E-Verify that appear to be fraudulent. If an employee tries to use a locked SSN, E-Verify will generate a “Tentative Nonconfirmation” (TNC). That employee will have a chance to contest at a Social Security Administration field office and have the E-Verify status reversed to “Employment Authorized.”
“This new enhancement provides yet another significant safeguard for E-Verify users and could assist employees who have had their Social Security numbers stolen or compromised,” said USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas.
USCIS will use algorithms, detection reports and analysis to identify patterns of fraudulent SSN use, then lock those numbers in E-Verify.