Typically providing your Social Security Number (SSN) should come after you have been employed, or at the very least, after you have been interviewed. After all, the only reason your employer should ask for your SSN is to enable them to report the contributions you make to your Social Security account. In many regards, this is the only reason that an employer should ask for your SSN.
Reasons Employees are Requested For SSN While Applying Job
However, as things are, this is not always the case. Employers are increasingly asking for your SSN even before you are an employee. Some request for this information even before you sit down for an interview. There are numerous reasons employees are requested their SSN while they apply for a job. They include:
#1. To Identify And Track Interviewees –
Many companies request this information as a means of tracking your identity. Much like telecom services companies that use the unique SSN to track their customers, some companies make use of this information to track their employees.
Ideally, this is not the case as companies should develop an internal means of tracking employees in their databases. However, companies that do not have the means of developing such custom software or are too lazy to develop one opt for using SSN as unique identifiers.
#2. To Conduct Background Checks –
Other companies request this information to facilitate background checks. There are numerous data points that they may be interested in even before they call you up for an interview. For instance, for a company who are sensitive about the age limit, they can use SSN to determine applicants who are suitable and applicants who are not. There are other things to learn about file for duplicate social security card, and hence they may ask for this information.
#3. They Simply Ask By Default Owing To The Human Resource Software They Use – While some companies request this information deliberately, others request this information due to the software they use to manage their human resources. There are numerous human resources software programs on the market. Additionally, businesses have an option of purchasing custom-coded software to suit their needs.
However, the ready-made software tends to be far cheaper than the custom software. As such, businesses that do not have a very huge a budget to spend on IT resources will almost certainly opt for the ready-made and cheaper option. This means that some businesses end up purchasing human resource software that has been designed to request your SSN by default, even when the company does not need this information before you become an employee.
With the understanding of the above, you still need to protect your identity. There have been reports of fake recruitment agencies that are just after the identities of unsuspecting individuals. As such, before you provide such information, be proactive in mitigating the chances of your identity being stolen.
If the SSN is absolutely necessary for the recruitment process, make sure you are dealing with a legitimate company before providing this information. Additionally, you can ask the company for more information regarding what they intend to do with your SSN.