Have you ever wondered how we get background screens started? Step one: The Social Trace.


For each and every background screen conducted by NationSearch, the crucial starting point is always the Social Security Number / Address Trace. We rely on information supplied by our clients and their applicants for this critical step in the form of social security numbers, addresses, and any legal names used by the applicant.

Data we receive from the verified social security number then becomes our basis for identifying individuals throughout the screening process. Aliases (other names used by individuals), the individual’s date of birth (DOB), and any possible residences/locations that are listed are evaluated and compared to the information provided. This methodical combing for applicable information allows our team of trained professionals to order searches by each specific case while adhering to the parameters of our clients’ packages.


In NationSearch’s decades of background screening experience, we have run into situations where individuals will intentionally write misleading information on authorizations in hopes of evading full disclosure of adverse criminal histories.

Using the Social Trace to our advantage we can, in most cases, expose such attempts: this common example is why employing a thorough background screening company to support your hiring decisions is such an important step.

There are, of course, many tools and searches that work in concert when conducting background screens. Consumer Reporting Agencies (CRAs) are not permitted to confirm the validity of a social security number through resources such as the Social Security Administration until after an individual is hired, which is where the I-9 and/or E-Verify process comes in.

Read why you should conduct background screens at your company here.