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Background Checks

Background checks have been performed throughout the country for decades and are used for the sole purpose of providing employers, educators and security personnel with the proper information regarding the criminal history of potential employees, students and other civilians working in secure environments, working with money, etc.

A background check is defined as the investigation of an individual??s public, commercial and financial records. These checks are performed during a routine employment screening, but police officers also run background checks when arresting a suspect or making a traffic stop to ensure that person does not have any outstanding warrants.

Background checks are performed by a third party provider for an employer such as governments, schools, airports or corporations. Employers perform background checks to determine the veracity of an individual??s resume, as well as to ensure the jobseeker does not have a criminal background. There are a variety of other background checks performed to verify education records, grades, degrees, credit history, gaps in employment, identity and address verification. The latter two are most useful when verifying that the person??s identity is not fraudulent. Additionally, landlords might perform background checks to make sure a potential tenant has a strong credit history and will not skip out on the rent.

When an employer or the police department perform a background check on a future employee or a suspect, there is plenty of potential information that can be requested, including:

? Prior drug tests and their results
? Driving records
? Military records
? Licensing records
? Dental history
? Employment records
? Financial records
? Education records
? Litigation records
? Criminal records,
? Birth certificate verification
? Social security number verification
? Results of any polygraph tests

Of course, specific laws apply as to what information can be investigated, who may legally perform a background check, and what must legally be done with the results.

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