Background Checks

Stuart K. Pratt, president and CEO of the Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA), recently penned a guest editorial in which he postulated that background checks are most accurate when they are performed by professional, private sector companies, e.g. credit reporting agencies (CRAs).

In the editorial, Pratt pointed out that data repositories at all levels of state and federal government have been proven to be inaccurate, incomplete and not routinely updated, while the work of private sector firms has not. “In a CDIA survey of its members’ millions of criminal history database searches conducted over the first three quarters of 2014, [the association] found that only 0.3 percent of these transactions resulted in consumers exercising their right under law to dispute the accuracy of the data,” Pratt said in his article.

Pratt’s editorial came in response to another opinion piece in which the author asserted that background checks done by private sector businesses were inaccurate. To refute that assertion, Pratt evaluated the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations database that was cited in the article.

According to Pratt, the Columbus Dispatch has found that there are “major flaws in [the BCI] criminal background-check system [including that it] periodically reports that felons have clean records.” Pratt went on to state, “The most accurate background screening assessment is one that uses…information from private sector databases and fingerprint checks…Companies that do these comprehensive background checks can review court records and other sources across Ohio and the nation, government databases cannot.”

Here at Barada, we couldn’t agree more. Only professional CRAs access, validate, cross-check and comply with consumer’s rights to ensure accuracy, completeness and repeatability. To learn more about how background screens should be conducted properly, we invite you to give us a call at (765) 932-5917.