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Lessons and stories from the front lines of fighting identity theft.


I didn’t know I used to work there……

Mar 26

Employment Fraud

Employment fraud involves an identity thief who obtains employment by using a stolen Social Security number.  These days, it’s not uncommon for identity thieves to use the name, Social Security number and date of birth of the victim, although many thieves will also use their given name with a stolen Social Security number.

A shady example that I recently read occurred when an employer fired an employee who had access to personnel records.  Out of retaliation, the ex-employee stole personal information for financial gain. The sensitive information was sold to criminals who then resold it to individuals that used it illegally for employment purposes.

How this would affect you if you happen to fall victim to such an identity theft scam is that you would be responsible for taxes associated with your Social Security number. Not only that, you would have the IRS after you and a tax lien blemishing your credit reports.  In most cases, this kind of identity theft goes undetected by the victim unless he/she is enrolled with a monitoring program and is alerted of an employment background check associated with his/her Social Security number. 

To be proactive now, the Social Security administration office recommends you do the following so you can determine if someone is using your Social Security number for work purposes:

1. Complete a request for a Social Security Statement (Form 7004). Your Social Security Statement contains a record of the earnings on which you have paid Social Security taxes during your working years.

2. You can request this form by contacting the Social Security toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213, or visiting your local Social Security office.

3. After you complete this form and return it to Social Security, you can expect to receive your statement in 4 to 6 weeks. If you find that earnings have been posted to your record that do not belong to you, re-contact Social Security or visit your local Social Security office to have the earnings removed.