[Federal Register: December 1, 1995 (Volume 60, Number 231)]
[Page 61687]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]


Privacy Act of 1974; Computer Matching Program; Notice

AGENCY: Department of Education.

ACTION: Notice of Computer Matching Programs to comply with Public Law
(Pub. L.) 100-503, the Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 


SUMMARY: Section 484(p) of title IV of the Higher Education Act of 
1965, as amended (HEA) requires the Secretary of Education, in 
cooperation with the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration 
(SSA), to verify any social security number (SSN) provided by an 
applicant for student financial assistance. Section 484(g) of the HEA 
authorizes the Secretary to verify statements provided by title IV 
applicants with regard to their citizenship and immigration status, 
using an automated or other system of verification.
    In order to ensure that applicants for title IV student financial 
assistance have a valid SSN and citizenship status for the purpose of 
meeting eligibility requirements under the title IV programs, the 
Department of Education (ED) and the SSA will exchange relevant 
verifying information using a computer matching program. The purpose of 
this notice is to announce the operation of the computer matching 
program and to provide certain required information concerning the 
computer matching program.
    In accordance with the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a) as 
amended by the Computer Matching and Privacy Protection Act of 1988 
(Pub. L. 100-503), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Guidelines 
on the Conduct of Matching Programs (see 54 FR at 25818, June 19, 
1989), and OMB Circular A-130, the following information is provided:

1. Names of Participating Agencies

    The Department of Education and the Social Security Administration.

2. Purpose of the Match

    Section 484(p) of the HEA requires ED to verify the SSN provided by 
any applicant for assistance under title IV of that Act. Section 484(g) 
of the HEA authorizes the Secretary to verify statements provided by 
title IV applicants with regard to their citizenship and immigration 
status using an automated or other system, with other Federal agencies 
that may be in possession of information relevant to such statements 
and supporting documentation.
    The purpose of this new matching program is to expand ED's matching 
program that verifies the accuracy of each applicant's SSN. The 
expanded matching program will further verify the accuracy of applicant 
claims of U.S. citizenship. The new match will supplement the 
Department's ability to track title IV loan defaulters using SSNs, by 
preventing disbursements of title IV assistance to applicants whose 
citizenship status do not comply with the requirements of section 
484(a)(5) of the HEA.

3. Authority for Conducting the Matching Program

    Sections 484 (g) and (p) of the HEA; Section 1106(a) of the Social 
Security Act.

4. Categories of Records and Individuals Covered by the Match

    ED will submit for verification from its Central Processing Systems 
files the SSN and other identifying information for each applicant for 
title IV assistance. This information will be matched against the SSA 
Numident, which contains the SSN, citizenship status and identifying 
information for all SSN holders.

5. Effective Dates of the Matching Program

    The matching program will become effective 40 days after a copy of 
the agreement, as approved by the Data Integrity Board of each agency, 
is sent to Congress and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) (or 
later if OMB objects to some or all of the agreement), or 30 days after 
publication of this notice in the Federal Register, whichever date is 
later. The matching program will continue for 18 months after the 
effective date and may be extended for an additional 12 months 
thereafter, if the conditions specified in 5 U.S.C. 522a(o)(2)(D) have 
been met.

6. Address for Receipt of Public Comments or Inquiries

    Individuals wishing to comment on this matching program or obtain 
additional information about the program including a copy of the 
computer matching agreement between ED and SSA should contact Ms. Edith 
Bell, Program Specialist, Policy Development Division, U.S. Department 
of Education, 600 Independence Avenue SW, (Room 3053, ROB-3), 
Washington, DC 20202, Telephone (202) 708-7888.
    Written comments should be submitted to Ms. Bell at this address. 
Individuals who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may 
call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 
between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern time, Monday through Friday.

    Dated: November 27, 1995.
David A. Longanecker,
Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education.
[FR Doc. 95-29338 Filed 11-30-95; 8:45 am]