Background checks, investigations and employment history checks are provided by screening companies and private investigators. Background checks and involve verifying an individual’s identity, checking criminal history, driving records, academic credentials, work experience, personal references and more.
Background record checks are often done as part of a pre-employment screening to help a company evaluate an applicant’s history and work experience to make informed hiring decisions and reduce negligent hiring liability. Another popular trend in the dating world is to do a reference check on a prospective mate to learn more about their criminal history, employment history or financial history. Instant Background Checks includes criminal record check, property value, lawsuits, judgments, bankruptcy, liens and much more!
What is included in a typical report?
Individual Report – Searches for individuals typically include checking an individual’s criminal history, former residences, verification of employment history and work experience, marital status, liens and judgments, membership in various organizations, political affiliations, professional license search, ethnic profile and religion. Also, a verification of education history, degrees and diplomas earned, schools attended will be completed. A driving history or DMV records check may be conducted to determine if the candidate is a responsible drive. In cases where the applicant may deal with money or financial services, the company may pull a credit history report. Screening companies may go further than pulling reports. They may conduct a drug test and contact and speak with personal references. In cases where the person may be working with children, the company may conduct a Sex offender registry search. A military service history check will be made, if applying for a military position or if military service is indicated.
Business – Involves checking into business licenses, OSHA violations, litigation, credit check, liens and judgments, SEC records (if a publicly traded company), Better Business Bureau, Chamber of Commerce in the city, consumer complaints, products and services, reputation, legal status, industry, major competitor and finally a criminal check or the owners or officers of the company.
How Much Does a Background Check Cost?
The cost of reports and verification services vary widely. Although some public records information is available for free online, don’t trust those websites or software tools that suggest you can run background checks for free online. There will almost always be a cost associated with running criminal records checks, employment history checks, and in-depth public records searches. Be sure to understand the cost and fees involved before purchasing. If you are working with a private eye, get a quote up front for all fees involved.
Databases, Information Providers and Investigation Software
Many companies use database information providers, investigation software or other online services to conduct public record searches and information verification. Some private investigators purchase access to the same online databases to perform record lookups and pull reports.
Intelius is a leader in providing public records, offers the most comprehensive reports available. Offer your customers the same service used by Fortune 500 companies. U.S. Search offers a range of research tools that include: Bankruptcies, tax liens, small claims civil judgments, current address verification & address history, phone numbers, relatives, roommates & neighbors, home value & property ownership, nationwide criminal search, and media search. Run the Report.
Accurint – Now owned by LexisNexis. Accurint is a widely accepted locate-and-research tool available to government, law enforcement and commercial customers. Its proprietary data-linking technology returns search results in seconds to the user’s desktop. Key features include:
- People Search locates neighbors, associates and possible relatives
- Phones Plus – track down phone numbers not typically available to increase your chances of finding your subject. Access over 50,000,000 non-directory assistance records, including cell phone numbers
- People at Work – links more than 132 million individuals to businesses and includes information such as business addresses, phone numbers, and possible dates of employment
- Link individuals with businesses, addresses, relatives and vehicles
- Advanced Person Search helps find individuals when only old or fragmented data is available
Business Search – Business checks allow you to learn about companies before doing work with them by performing this comprehensive search on the corporation. Determine if they have filed for bankruptcy, who has liens against their assets, and if they are a legally operating company.
Clear – CLEAR is an investigative platform from Thomson Reuters designed for professionals who need information about individuals and companies. The service provides fast access to a vast collection of public and proprietary records, CLEAR helps you find out about people and their connections.
Data-Trac Online Investigative Network – Data-Trac allows users to conduct searches such as residence history, Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) searches, Social security ,etc.) for licensed private investigators, corporate security departments, attorneys, & human resource departments.
EasyBackgrounds – Provides Criminal Check services, Employee Check services, emloyee work history review, and pre-employment screening services to help companies hire honest and qualified employees.
Employment History Verification – Provides pre-employment screening services for employers.
IntelliCorp – A nationwide provider of employment screening products and services. Provides services such as SSN Verification, Criminal Records, Motor Vehicle Reports, Drug Testing
Intelius – Intelius provides accurate and up to date information from billions of records. Intelius provides: background checks, criminal records search, reverse searches, people finders, email lookup, social network investigations, property records and more.
IRBSearch – IRBsearch customers can search billions of records not always available in public databases. IRBsearch helps locate missing persons, verify identity, comply with legislation, prevent or detect fraud, determine institutional risk control, aid law enforcement, and contribute to security initiatives. In addition to exclusive data solutions, IRB provides investigators with an entire suite of products and services.
KnowX – KnowX.com public record and background check portal retired on July 31, 2017. See below to learn about other solutions provided by LexisNexis Research Solutions.
LexisNexis – Lexis Nexis provides solutions in two major categories. First, LexisNexis provides Legal and Professional Solutions for law firms, corporations, government agencies and academic institutions seeking legal solutions, news & business insights. Second, they provide Risk Solutions for companies and government agencies seeking data analytics supporting compliance, customer acquisition, fraud detection, health outcomes, identity solutions, investigation, receivables management, risk decisioning and workflow optimization.
National Association of Professional Background Screeners – A non-profit trade organization representing companies that offer employment and screening services. NAPBS exists to promote ethical business practices, compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act and foster awareness of issues related to consumer protection and privacy rights within the background screening industry, while giving the industry the ability to effectively demonstrate its competence, reliability, and willingness to adopt standards.
NICS: The National Instant Criminal Background Check System – NICS is used by Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to instantly determine whether a prospective buyer is eligible to buy firearms or explosives. Before ringing up the sale, cashiers call in a check to the FBI or to other designated agencies to ensure that each customer does not have a criminal record or isn’t otherwise ineligible to make a purchase. More than 100 million such checks have been made in the last decade, leading to more than 700,000 denials.
Pipl – Pipl’s query-engine helps you find deep web pages that cannot be found on regular search engines. Unlike a typical search-engine, Pipl is designed to retrieve information from the deep web. Our robots are set to interact with searchable databases and extract facts, contact details and other relevant information from personal profiles, member directories, scientific publications, court records and numerous other deep-web sources.
TLOxp – TLOxp was created by the inventor of AutoTrak and Accurint. It is a completely new and unique investigative system for finding knowledge and insight. It combines advanced search capabilities with massive and unique data repositories. Licensed investigators can use TLOxp for:
- Skip Tracing
- Investigating and analyzing asset ownership to identify scams, pattern of fraud, suspicious claims, hidden assets and to authenticate legitimate claims
- Locate and analyze people, places, businesses and interrelationships over time
- Research criminal histories and associations
- Find witnesses, and gather information to support litigation
Free Background Screening or Online Searches
While searching online for companies that provide public records, you will likely come across advertisements promoting the availability of free background record searches. While some reports and data may be available for free in the form of public records, a true free background check is likely not available, or will likely be incomplete. Some online detective software packages suggest that you can invest a small amount in their software and then conduct unlimited searches for free. While you will get unlimited access to their search tools, it is usually little more than free telephone number and address searches. Our advice is to ignore the advertisements for free checks. If you truly need to learn about someone’s past, criminal history, driving record, or online activity, it is worthwhile to invest the money in obtaining a true dossier.