Equifax's The Work Number database trades in employee data
In November 2017, an investigation of Equifax's Work Number database, owned by the company's TALX division, found that it contains over 296 million employment records including employees at all salary levels. Every week the database receives current payroll data on about a third of the working US population from sources including 75% of Fortune 500 companies, 85% of federal government, and state governments and agencies, courts, colleges, and thousands of small businesses. Companies pay Equifax to process and verify employees' income and work history; TALX data may also be used to determine an applicant's entitlement to social services and welfare. TALX is among Equifax's fastest-growing businesses, earning more than 20% of its 2017 $3.1 billion in revenues. The Work Number database also raises revenues by selling data to third-party creditors and mortgage lenders, which receive an alert if a current mortgage holder loses their job. The data is also used by the US Department of Health and Human Services to help administer the Affordable Care Act.
tags: Equifax, TALX, employment, credit scoring
Writer: Joel Winston
Publication: Fast Company