Everyone Knows Everything, Is Probably Just the Way to Think About It

An Equifax partner company called The Work Number has been compiling paystub-by-paystub salary histories, furnished by employers, for one-third of U.S. adults. Sometimes they sell that information to debt collectors. Sometimes they disclose it to landlords. Sometimes they give it to your new employer to confirm what you actually made at your previous employer. Sometimes they ask your permission first, which they are supposed to, but sometimes they don’t.

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7 Comments / Post A Comment

navigateher (#555)

What? I always, always lie about what I make in my current job when applying to a new one. This would be, like, DOOM.

I doubt that kind of business could happen here, though you never know.

Hm, I think my employer uses this service, but when I went to their website to try to find my info I couldn’t figure out how to log in (and my employer wasn’t listed). Weird!

The article says this service is subject to the free credit report rules, so I will try to request mine.

ThatJenn (#916)

@stuffisthings If you succeed, let me know. I didn’t find it intuitive – there’s a number you can call but I won’t have a chance to call until later.

@ThatJenn I think you need both your employer number and an employee number. I seem to remember our HR person mentioning it in a meeting as a way to verify income/employment for landlords and so forth so I’m going to try to get my number from her.

ThatJenn (#916)

@stuffisthings Upon further investigation, it looks like even if your employer doesn’t use them, you can request one by mail: http://www.theworknumber.com/Employees/DataReport/report_request.pdf

ThatJenn (#916)

@ThatJenn I used that form, sent it in via mail on 1/31, and received my report on Friday, 2/15 (so a pretty good turnaround). It only seems to know about one of my employers, though it knows about all three capacities in which I’ve worked for them.

deepomega (#22)

In which information asymmetry is the biggest advantage your employer has over you.

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