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William Thompson
2011-Oct-01, 12:39 AM
How does someone do a background check on someone online for free?

jfribrg
2011-Oct-01, 01:35 AM
I'm not sure if you can. I think the closest you can get to a free online background check is to get one of your friends to pay for a real background check and have them email the results to you.

closetgeek
2011-Oct-01, 01:39 AM
It varies from county to county but in mine, you can go to the clerk of county courts and do a public court case search. It only gives information on that particular county.

NickW
2011-Oct-01, 03:24 AM
How intensive of a background check do you want? Is it a criminal records search? If it is, public records are the best way to go, but depending on the state, you have to pay for them, or go down to the county courthouse. Some states, like Arizona will allow you to pull the public records of anyone just by name. If you are looking for a full background with credit, that is something you can only do with a signed authorization for release of information.

We run about a dozen backgrounds a day where I work, but I live in Oregon, and we only do regional searches, so if someone is coming from the east coast, we don't get any info.

Inclusa
2011-Oct-02, 06:02 AM
So, what's the point of doing a background check? (May be a bit sarcastic, but this is how sometimes things work:)
1)A clean history doesn't preclude innocence in the future.
2)We cannot read someone's mind yet.
3)Often enough, most people have no ideas about how things come about.

slang
2011-Oct-02, 09:54 AM
So, what's the point of doing a background check?

Reducing risks.


1)A clean history doesn't preclude innocence in the future.

On the other hand, a non-clean history carries a big risk of repeat offense. Would you want your bank to allow access to your money to a person with a history of financial fraud?

HenrikOlsen
2011-Oct-02, 10:51 AM
Reducing risks.
Documenting that you've shown due diligence so your behind is covered when the person turns out to be not how the interview gave an impression of. It's basically a CYA action.

profloater
2011-Oct-02, 11:07 AM
facebook, google, companies house (uK), county court records, electoral list, credit check agencies. check references out.

NickW
2011-Oct-02, 06:10 PM
Documenting that you've shown due diligence so your behind is covered when the person turns out to be not how the interview gave an impression of. It's basically a CYA action.

I know that is one of the reasons why my company does them. The people we hire have to be able to go into peoples house, when they are not home. If something were to go missing because of theft by the employee, we would have to show that we did our due diligence that this was the first time that person had ever done that and didn't have multiple charges for theft in the past, as an example.

slang
2011-Oct-02, 06:41 PM
Documenting that you've shown due diligence so your behind is covered when the person turns out to be not how the interview gave an impression of. It's basically a CYA action.

It can be that way, yes. And hiring only people with a clean background is no reason to do away with security checks and monitoring after employment, there's always the chance that someone turns "bad" for the first time. Still, for some companies doing a thorough background check before hiring is legally required (here in my country, at least). And after some gruesome incidents here with adults showing an unhealthy interest in kids (to put it extremely mildly), these rules are to be tightened for schools and kindergartens. I can't see the effort to reduce the risk of a pedophile being hired in such jobs as a CYA action. But perhaps you meant the tendency to do background checks even for jobs where it's hardly required?

HenrikOlsen
2011-Oct-02, 07:26 PM
I did.

Jim
2011-Oct-03, 01:52 AM
... It's basically a CYA action.

Oh, yes.

I'm not sure if I ever mentioned this, but I refereed soccer for about 20 years. Some years back there was an incident at a youth tournament in which a man pretending to be a referee accosted a youth player. This caused STYSA to insist that all personnel who deal with youths in any official capacity should pass a background check.

The general feeling among referees was, first, this would not have prevented the imposter. Second, background checks only turn up those dumb enough to have been caught before. Plus background checks were to be conducted every two years, so pass the first and do something bad and you've got two years before they turn you. Add to that background checks cannot be run against anyone under 18 and many youth level referees are under 18, and you have another big loophole.

But, STYSA had conducted due diligence and CYA'd themselves.

Inclusa
2011-Oct-03, 05:47 AM
We can never have 100% security; no matter how honest or trustworthy a person seems, there's always a slight chance that something go wrong.

Fazor
2011-Oct-03, 08:06 PM
I've been through so many background checks I feel like a flag has probably lit up and I'm surely on some FBI watch list. But they've all been employment related. Background checks get even more indepth when you're applying for jobs that require you carry a gun.

. . . that said, I'm not sure how most of my fellow (former) employees ever got the job to begin with. Must not be as strict as a background check as they make it out to be!

Then I quit that line of work and now sell insurance. Yep, 'nother background check for that.

DonM435
2011-Oct-05, 01:47 PM
Of course, a half-baked background check could easily render an innocent person unemployable due to the misbehavior of someone with a similar name. We should strive to avoid that.

Trebuchet
2011-Oct-05, 03:51 PM
There've been ads on TV lately for services claiming to run background checks for anyone -- like before you go on a date. I suspect they're pretty much scams but don't know.

My name is common enough that there are two disambiguation pages for it on Wikipedia -- one for the proper first name and another for the common nickname. And lots of Google results, including obituaries with even the correct middle name. None of these results are for me, of course. It seems I get around. I'm pretty sure a background check with no information other than my name would be useless.

Fazor
2011-Oct-05, 04:11 PM
My name is common enough that there are two disambiguation pages for it on Wikipedia -- one for the proper first name and another for the common nickname. And lots of Google results, including obituaries with even the correct middle name. None of these results are for me, of course. It seems I get around. I'm pretty sure a background check with no information other than my name would be useless.

Same problem here. After having 1,000+ articles on my website all attributed to me by name, I wondered if I had moved up to at least the first page of google results. Nope.

One of the first PR firms I started working with asked if I was the same guy that used to be with [forget which] publication. I said "Depends, did you like him?" :) (And then, of course clarified in the next sentence that no, that's not me.)

Two months ago I tuned in to watch a live video Press Release for a just announced game. To my surprise, I was one of the guys there giving the presentation! (by name I was him, anyway.)

As for those commercials; they come off as one of those companies who are charging people and then returning results only from public information (free) sources. That's not necessarily a scam, as it can theoretically be a convenience charge. But I wouldn't bet that their results are all that in depth or accurate.

Trebuchet
2011-Oct-06, 12:57 AM
After my last post, I put a little more detail into Google, including my middle name and town of primary residence. Most results were again junk. But one, from one of the companies I mentioned advertising on TV, had me. Including my alternate residence and the names of my wife and late parents. Kind of creepy. I'm sort of sorry I looked.

NickW
2011-Oct-06, 01:32 AM
The background checks we run at work take into account that we may have someone with the same name. That is why we also use the social security number, which is matched to the name to make sure we have the right person. Of course, even that isn't fool proof. We had someone who had the same name as someone else, and the SS number was only one digit off of this persons.

vonmazur
2011-Oct-06, 04:31 AM
Guys: Just have them go to a Gun Shop and do the ATF Form 4473....The FBI does the NICS Check, and they do take the possibilites of mis-identification seriously. The FBI has access to all the records, just asking the local yokel clerks reveals little, unless the applicant is an idiot...I do this all day long for a job, and have discussed the process with the NICS management many times....IMHO any ad that promises to do this for free on the net is not quite truthful...

I think that only legitimate LE has access to the NCIC and the various state and local agencies and their records...None of this is available on line--ever!

Dale

ggremlin
2011-Oct-06, 05:01 AM
When I was being hired for a job back a couple of (mumble) ago, the employer run a background check and was nice enough to tell me a couple of weird things had shown up.

It turns out that a gentlemen with the same name had defaulted on a couple of store issued credit cards back in the 60's, they were issued when I was 2. How they got onto my credit history is anyone's guess. A couple of phone calls fixed it, not the horror story you normally read about. I have reviewed my credit report every year since. And yes, I did got the job.

By the way, "TANSTAAFL", Robert Heinlein

billslugg
2011-Oct-08, 08:55 PM
Guys: Just have them go to a Gun Shop and do the ATF Form 4473....The FBI does the NICS Check, and they do take the possibilites of mis-identification seriously.
Dale

If you are going to send them to a gun shop to do a 4473, they have to buy a gun. I don't know how you ask a person to buy a gun without tipping them off that you are curious about their suitability. You must transfer a gun in order for a 4473 to be filled out. You must write down the mfr, name, serial # and caliber but this is not told to the NICS. You only tell the NICS whether it is a long gun or handgun. Once you give them his name, SS# (optional), birth city, residence city, birth date, weight, hair and eye color all you get back is "proceed", "delay" or "deny". You get no more detail than that.

RAF_Blackace
2011-Oct-08, 10:43 PM
In the UK the best they can run is a CRB Check (Criminal Records Bureaux), these come in several varieties depending on the job, a basic check gives you any crimes you have committed and that are not lapsed. A Full CRB check also shows lapsed crimes. I also know some places where they do a family history check (because a mate of mine was escorted from Sellafield site by armed police because they found out his grandfather dug trenches for the Germans in WW2). In the job I do, I needed to prove my employment history had no gaps in in, anything more than a 14 day gap and I had to prove where I was and what I was doing. I think they may have suspected me of running off to Pakistan to become a terrorist, although the basic training for that is more than two weeks I'm led to believe :)

The only problem with doing this is that now I get bombarded by some recruitment company called "security cleared Jobs". They keep offering me anything from Nuclear Submarine Officer to The Queens Proctologist.

Flat Handle
2011-Nov-21, 08:39 PM
I'd be interested in this. What did you find out?

Tensor
2011-Nov-22, 03:35 AM
One thing my military security clearance did for me was provide instant notification. If anything ever showed up anywhere, (either through common name, reporting error, or, in one case, fraudulent use of my social security number) I was in my commanders office within 24hrs trying to explain to them why the report was in error. It was free, and I swear, it was better than Life-Lock, if you ignore the upset commander part.

Jens
2011-Nov-22, 07:48 AM
And yes, I did got the job.


I hope they didn't give you a grammar test. ;)

slang
2011-Nov-22, 10:58 PM
I'd be interested in this. What did you find out?

Which post are you responding to? It would help to include a short quote, or at least provide the post number (#24 in your case, shown upper right).

Cougar
2011-Nov-23, 02:19 AM
I think that only legitimate [Law Enforcement] has access to the NCIC... None of this is available on line--ever!

Right, that's fairly highly restricted. It's U.S.-wide: wants, warrants, criminal history, even arrests that were subsequently dismissed. Sign a form that says the records are about you, and you ought to be able to get them from your local police station. Might take a few days and ten bucks. If you have warrants out, don't deliver the form yourself. :doh: