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View Poll Results: Do you give out the last four digits of your SSN to recruiters?
Yes, there is no harm. 5 21.74%
No, I keep my information very secure and an interview is not worth it. 15 65.22%
Yes, I keep my information secure, but for a chance at an interview I will give it out. 0 0%
I don't know, it depends. 3 13.04%
Voters: 23. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
Old 09-02-2016, 11:36 AM
 
Location: SC
8,796 posts, read 6,065,929 times
Reputation: 12870

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I get calls from recruiters wanting to submit my resume to Blue Cross/Blue Shield Of Jacksonville FL almost monthly.

My resume is almost always a perfect fit, but I refuse to be submitted, why?

They used to always demand the last 4 digits of your SSN (now they want the last five) and the month and year of birth. Don't they know that this serial number section of the SSN is the most critical for ID theft?

Given this information and a copy of your resume, which most likely contains your place of birth (High School/Colleges attended) your full SSN can be closely calculated.

Then on top of this, the recruiter will want you to send this information over the unsecure internet mail service. Any good programmer can decode almost any SSN given this "little bit of information." So now, a potential thief may have:
  • Your full name (From your Resume)
  • Your full address (Also from your Resume)
  • Your phone number (Also from your Resume - and will unlock other information about you)
  • Most if not all of your SSN
  • Your previous Job locations (Resume)
  • The college you attended (Resume)
  • Your Spouse name (From Resume via Phone Number)
  • A plethora of other information gleaned from the web using the above information.

What I learned from a suspicious call from my bank | Taking Charge

IMO, BC/BS is an ID Theft gift shop. I would never, ever give them or any other company (especially through a recruiter you don't know from Jack who may be located in some foreign country) this information.

Last edited by blktoptrvl; 09-02-2016 at 11:51 AM..
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Old 09-02-2016, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
7,454 posts, read 4,769,116 times
Reputation: 16456
This would be especially problematic in a state with only one SS prefix. The recent change in the way SS numbers are issued won't have any impact for another 15 years or so. In Alaska, the only prefix any adult with an Alaska issued SSN will have is 574. Give out the last four and there are only 99 possibilities for the middle two digits. I'll pass on giving out the last four.
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Old 09-02-2016, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Tennessee
26,742 posts, read 19,801,796 times
Reputation: 32057
Not a chance for some random headhunter.
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Old 09-02-2016, 12:47 PM
 
Location: In a vehicle.
5,603 posts, read 3,618,312 times
Reputation: 9343
Maybe give them a wrong one then during the interview say "Oh, was thinking of my friends address and got them mixed up"
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Old 09-02-2016, 01:24 PM
 
464 posts, read 294,366 times
Reputation: 567
Why does a recruiter at this stage need to know any part of your SSN? Even when an initial company job application asks for it, unless I know it's safe (e.g. with the federal government) I'll usually put down something like "available when necessary" if possible. In most cases an employer doesn't need to know your SSN until the earlier of 1) The number is needed for a background check or 2) You are hired and begin working (for tax reporting purposes - required by federal law).
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Old 09-02-2016, 01:41 PM
 
464 posts, read 294,366 times
Reputation: 567
That article the OP linked too is a bit inaccurate for many of us over 30 or so re: SSNs assigned at birth, because until the late 1980s children did not need SSNs for parents to claim them on their taxes. In fact, if you're over 45 or so you may well remember getting your SSN around the time you started working. Since the author pointed out the detail about the number randomization beginning in 2011, I thought I'd point out the other details behind the history of when SSNs were often assigned.
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Old 09-03-2016, 08:24 AM
 
Location: North Texas
24,576 posts, read 34,255,658 times
Reputation: 28402
Quote:
Originally Posted by blktoptrvl View Post
I get calls from recruiters wanting to submit my resume to Blue Cross/Blue Shield Of Jacksonville FL almost monthly.

My resume is almost always a perfect fit, but I refuse to be submitted, why?

They used to always demand the last 4 digits of your SSN (now they want the last five) and the month and year of birth. Don't they know that this serial number section of the SSN is the most critical for ID theft?

Given this information and a copy of your resume, which most likely contains your place of birth (High School/Colleges attended) your full SSN can be closely calculated.

Then on top of this, the recruiter will want you to send this information over the unsecure internet mail service. Any good programmer can decode almost any SSN given this "little bit of information." So now, a potential thief may have:
  • Your full name (From your Resume)
  • Your full address (Also from your Resume)
  • Your phone number (Also from your Resume - and will unlock other information about you)
  • Most if not all of your SSN
  • Your previous Job locations (Resume)
  • The college you attended (Resume)
  • Your Spouse name (From Resume via Phone Number)
  • A plethora of other information gleaned from the web using the above information.

What I learned from a suspicious call from my bank | Taking Charge

IMO, BC/BS is an ID Theft gift shop. I would never, ever give them or any other company (especially through a recruiter you don't know from Jack who may be located in some foreign country) this information.

Yup....if you're over a certain age your date and place of birth gives away the first three digits. Then you give away the last four. Then all an ID thief has to do is guess the last two.

I never give away the last 4 digits of my SSN. I don't even like to give out my date/place of birth.
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Old 09-03-2016, 08:43 AM
 
Location: NJ
299 posts, read 267,768 times
Reputation: 641
Never. Unless and until a firm offer is made contingent upon a successful background check, they get neither my birth date nor any part of my SS #.
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Old 09-03-2016, 10:59 AM
eok
 
6,684 posts, read 3,342,801 times
Reputation: 8472
Are you sure BCBS really requires that info from recruiters? Could the recruiters be ID thieves pretending to be recruiters?
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Old 09-03-2016, 01:06 PM
 
4,228 posts, read 2,523,261 times
Reputation: 4700
I called to ask our gas company a stupid question (I was not requesting or changing my service) and they asked for the last 4 (after getting name address phone and account number). I told them I had never given it to them before, so giving it to them now would not prove it was me. They said they had "a place" where they could confirm the info. I still declined so they forced me to setup a 4 digit numerical pw. I used the last 4 of the account number.

Comcast also asks for this. A friend told me that according to the SSA, your SS# can only be used for federal agencies and programs.

I would never give it to a random recruiter.
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