For each report, we had the subject verify the information about their addresses, phone numbers, emails and relatives was correct. We saw that there was more variation with phone numbers and emails, especially cell numbers. Some of this may be due to how much a person shares on social media, but we noticed some background check companies didn’t include any of this information at all.
It is important to note that the information provided by the Interstate Information Index may come from the agency who "booked" the individual and not necessarily the agency who arrested the individual. Therefore, there may be discrepancies between the arrest date, location, and arresting agency listed in the database and the actual date, location, and agency who made the arrest. The Interstate Information Index may also contain incarceration information as well, listing each time an inmate is transferred from one correctional institution to another as a separate "arrest." The Interstate Information Index is only as accurate as the information reported to it by individual agencies, and frequently lacks comprehensive information on the dispositions of the various arrests it lists. It is best used as a guide on where to find more comprehensive information on the individual.
As a general rule, employers may not take adverse action against an applicant or employee (not hiring or terminating them), solely on the basis of results obtained through a database search. Database searches, as opposed to source records searches (search of actual county courthouse records), are notoriously inaccurate, contain incomplete or outdated information, and should only be used as an added safety net when conducting a background check. Failure by employers to follow FCRA guidelines can result in hefty penalties.
In 2017, the Insurance Information Institute reported that over 16.7 million Americans were victims of identity fraud. That's about 4 percent of the population. Adding to the concerns of the safety of your personal information is the dramatic rate of data breaches in 2018. According to Business Insider’s list of the 21 biggest data breaches of 2018, over 2.5 billion accounts containing sensitive information were exposed to hackers just last year. Basically, the chances your personal information is already on the dark web is high.
Due to the sensitivity of the information contained in consumer reports and certain records, there are a variety of important laws regulating the dissemination and legal use of this information. Most notably, the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) regulates the use of consumer reports (which it defines as information collected and reported by third party agencies) as it pertains to adverse decisions, notification to the applicant, and destruction and safekeeping of records.
A felony conviction is not like a debt collection issue on a credit report. It’s a permanent mark on your record and appears on your record even after you die. And for good reason - felonies are considered the most serious criminal offenses a person can commit within society - murder, arson, fraud, armed robbery, sexual assault, etc. If you’ve been convicted of a felony, it means you either pleaded guilty to an egregious offense or you were found guilty through the justice system.
Since the beginning of 2012, the data providing for the criminal records of Estonian citizens is available online. Any individual with a criminal record can access the electronic version of the database to receive this information for free. In order to view information pertaining to a non-related individual, then a fixed fee must be paid to the Ministry of Justice of the Republic. The individual's name and identification in number is also required to view their criminal record. However, there still remain some restrictions on access to this register, including protecting access to information on the criminal records of minors.