Social Security Numbers: Transfers and Sales of Public Records That May Contain Social Security Numbers (GAO-08-1004SP, September 2008), an E-supplement to GAO-08-1009


The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is conducting a review of transfers and sales of public records that may contain social security numbers. GAO is the audit, evaluation, and investigative arm of Congress. As a part of this study, we are asking public record keepers at the county level to complete this web survey.

Specifically, GAO is interested in two types of document transfers: (1) bulk transfers and sales, and (2) subscription services or web sites. Bulk transfers or sales involve companies obtaining all or significant subsets of the public records maintained by your office. For example, a business may obtain all property records recorded in your office on a monthly basis. Fee-based subscription services or web sites allow users to remotely search for, view, and print individual records. For both types of transfers, GAO is interested in how these records are made available, the types of businesses that obtain these records from your office, and the extent of any restrictions placed on how recipients of these records can use the information they contain.

GAO plans to summarize the information counties provide in a report. Although most responses will be aggregated, individual county responses may be used as illustrative examples. This survey is an important component of our study, and we expect that your responses will provide the Congress with valuable information on the issue of sales and transfers of public records.

Navigation, Exiting and Printing the Survey

It is important that you always use the "Exit" button at the bottom of the screen to close the survey. If you do not, you will lose all the information that you entered on the screen where you improperly exited the program.

Until the Web site closing date, you may reopen and work on your survey. When you reopen the survey, it will go to the last response you entered. You can change your answers, even after exiting, by reopening the survey.

Please do not use the "Enter" key on your keyboard to navigate through the survey. Use the scroll bar on the right side of the screen or the topic menu on the left side of the screen.

You are provided a link at the end of the survey to view and print your survey responses. Also, you have the option of printing your responses at the end of each section by pressing the "Print" button.

How to Submit Your Survey

When you have completed the survey, please mark the last question as "Survey completed" and then use the exit button to exit the survey. This lets GAO know that you are finished, and that you want us to use your answers. Your answers will not be used unless you have done this.

GAO Contact

If you have any questions, please call or e-mail one of the following individuals:

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