As Florida lawmakers debate whether to require employers to use E-Verify to check whether job-seekers are eligible to work in the country, the federal government is testing out a new employee-verification system, similar to credit checks and offered by Equifax.

According to The Washington Post, it may be less prone to Social Security fraud, one of the system’s biggest loopholes:

Alejandro Mayorkas, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, said the government planned to use the initiative to evaluate how the third-party verification system worked, with a view to making the tool available to employers.

Mayorkas added that only Congress could compel employers to use third-party verification systems. The main E-Verify system is also voluntary for employers, but House Republicans have indicated that they would like it to be mandatory.

Private identification systems might reduce Social Security number fraud, but Mayorkas said he has concerns about how the federal government would deal with errors in third-party databases.

The Florida Senate’s immigration bill, where the E-Verify provisions have become the subject of dispute, was not discussed this morning. Judiciary Committee chair Anitere Flores, R-Miami, said it could get taken up next week, but the committee’s schedule is packed.

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