Mortgage lenders need to know an applicant's drivers license number as a form of identification. Typically, a copy of a official ID is used to verify the information provided on the application as is a social security number, employment history for two years, pay stubs and any other income. This process in mandated by federal law in the Patriot Act and is used as a precaution to fight terrorism in the United States, according to Privacy Rights Clearinghouse.
Mortgage brokers, banks and financial institutions are required to confirm the identity of all customers using their services at the onset. Each person needs to show a valid government issued ID, passport or green card with a photo that is then used to check against government lists of known or suspected terrorists.
This information along with an applicants legal name, address and date of birth must be kept for a period of five years after the account is closed, as stated on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council's website.
Once an identity is confirmed, an agent will use the other information that was provided to confirm financial details listed on an application. This includes contacting previous and present employers and landlords. Tax returns and pay stubs from the last two years are also required as proof that the necessary funds to repay a loan will be available, as noted by Home Loan Learning Center.