Identification Number:
Intended Audience:All RCs/ARCs/ADs/FOs/TSCs/WSUs/PSCs
Originating Office:DCO OPSOS
Title:Desktop Faxing
Type:EM - Emergency Messages
Program:All Programs
Link To Reference:See References at the end of this EM
Retention Date: Oct 19, 2023

A. Purpose

This emergency message (EM) provides information regarding Desktop Faxing.

B. Background

Due to an Engage SSA suggestion by a teleservice center employee, Operations and Systems initiated a phased rollout of Desktop Faxing from April through September 2019, to test the ability to send and receive faxes electronically via Microsoft Outlook. To date, Desktop Faxing has rolled out to all Field Offices, Teleservice Centers, Workload Support Units, DCO (headquarters, regional offices, and area director offices), and Payment Centers. To assist offices in marketing their new eFax toll-free line, Operations has offered the following during regional training sessions. This information is available at the Desktop Faxing SharePoint site.

    · Marketing letter template; and

    · Instructions to update information in DOORS and iFOLO

NOTE: Marketing is imperative for the future removal of analog fax lines.

C. Desktop Faxing Using Outlook

Any SSA employee that has access to Microsoft Outlook has the ability to send and receive faxes electronically via their Outlook email client. Sending an outbound fax by email is similar to sending a normal email. The only difference is that the fax will go to the recipient’s fax machine instead of an email address. To send a fax via Outlook, the SSA employee:

    · composes a new message;

    · enters the recipient's fax number;

    · attaches the fax document as a digital file; and

    · clicks send

This enables SSA employees to fax digital files easily from their email client instead of using a fax machine/multifunction device. In addition, incoming faxes can be delivered to a shared mailbox as a PDF file, enabling users to receive faxes by email.
      NOTE: For each office location, a shared mailbox is available for both sending and receiving faxes. The office managers manage this mailbox. Management is responsible for granting access to the shared mailbox. Permissions can vary based on the employee’s need.
See the guide to Desktop Faxing with email for detailed instructions on how to send and receive an eFax as well as how to delegate access to the shared mailbox.

In terms of sending

      NOTE: The same policy for faxing Personally Identifiable Information (PII) applies to the desktop faxing solution. Although the eFax originates as an email in Microsoft Outlook, the eFax is converted to a fax and is delivered to the recipient’s fax machine via the public telephone network. EFax mirrors the current faxing policy for PII. For more information, see the FAQ guide.
D. Digital Fax Line Options

While most offices will not need all three lines, the following lines are all available in the field offices. The three line options are:

    · WorkTrack – used to route inbound fax traffic to a site’s WorkTrack folder for profiling.

    · Business – used to route inbound fax traffic to your shared mailbox, managed by just management or also staff members. This mailbox is for non-HR related items and for general fax use.

    · Administrative – used to route inbound fax traffic to your shared mailbox, which is strictly for management use in dealing with things like HR-related items such as medical leave requests and more.

E. Fax Extensions

Desktop Faxing has three different fax extensions that allow users to send a fax either with a coversheet, barcode, or without either. Below are the three-fax extensions and a description of their most appropriate uses:

    · – this fax extension will allow you to send a fax without an automatically generated fax coversheet coming from “Social Security Administration.” This is the fax extension that you should use when sending a personal fax under SSA’s limited use policy (GN 03360.020).
        o See the FAQ guide to see how you can attach a custom coversheet to this fax extension.
    · – this fax extension allows you to send a fax with a fax coversheet. The fax coversheet is hard-coded to always display “FROM: Social Security Administration”.
        o NOTE: Do not use this fax extension for sending a personal fax.
    · – this fax extension allows you to send a fax into one of the repositories that requires a barcode (e.g. NDRED, eView, or Paperless).
        o Using this extension does not provide an automatically generated fax coversheet. Users will still need to attach the barcode document first, followed by the document file that you wish to fax into one of the repositories.
F. eBEV Application

As of March 2019, Desktop Faxing has allowed the capability to eFax 1099s and Benefit Verification (BEVE) notices via Outlook. See the eBEV eFaxing guide for instructions.

Closing Paragraph

Direct all program-related and technical questions to your Regional Office (RO) support staff. RO support staff may refer questions, concerns or problems to their Central Office contacts.

Desktop Faxing User Guides and Training Materials
GN 03360.020 Privacy Act Administration - Copying Records
GN 03340.015 Access Requirements

EM-21023 - Desktop Faxing - 03/19/2021