All posts by Les Rosen

Automation in Employment Background Screening Leads to Both Increased Efficiency and Increased Risks

In recent years, employment background screening has gone from a costly and time consuming task reserved for selected job applicants to an increasingly automated and technology driven business necessity in a global economy where employers expect fast, accurate, and inexpensive results from screening providers. However, both employers and background screeners are finding with increased efficiency comes increased risks, especially when it comes to the use of unfiltered information going directly to employers from criminal database or inaccurate information obtained by “screen scrapping or automated robotic searches.” This is Trend Number 4 of the fifth annual ‘Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Background Screening Accreditation Program Proof of Increased Emphasis on Professionalism in Industry

When the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) was formed in 2003 as a professional trade association for the background screening industry, the idea of an accreditation process was a central driving force in order to demonstrate that background screening was a professional endeavor. Currently, NAPBS accreditation is quickly becoming a requirement of many employers when considering a background screening provider since it is the only practical means of third party verification of the professionalism and competency of a particular screening firm. This is Trend Number 5 of the fifth annual ‘Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Diploma Mills Offering Fake Degrees and False Credentials Likely to Increase in Tight Job Market

A 2011 report from Europe’s leading background screening firm revealed an astounding 48 percent increase worldwide in the number of known fake diploma mills in the previous year, and the number of what the report describes as “largely online entities whose degrees are worthless due to the lack of valid accreditation and recognition” is likely to increase in the coming year as desperate job applicants knowingly – and unknowingly – do business with companies that offer fake degrees and false credentials for a price. This is Trend Number 6 of the fifth annual ‘Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Employment Screening Lawsuits Increase as Attorneys and Consumers Become Familiar with FCRA Laws Regulating Background Checks

Consumers and attorneys are looking more closely at background check reports and laws governing employment screening and filing more lawsuits against employers. On one hand, employers are being sued by victims that alleged the employer failed to perform adequate screening. On the other, employers and background screening firms also face lawsuits from job applicants complaining about the accuracy of background reports, or failure to meet the guidelines of the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). In a number of cases, class action suits are being utilized as the vehicle to bring legal actions against employers. This is Trend Number 7 of the fifth annual ‘Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

New E-Verify Laws Create Complex Web of Federal and State Rules for Employers

While federal law mandates that federal contractors and subcontractors in all states must use the otherwise voluntary electronic employment eligibility verification system known as E-Verify, several U.S. states – including Alabama, Arizona, California, Georgia, and North Carolina – recently enacted laws mandating the use (or non-use) of E-verify, a free web-based system that allows employers to verify the legal work authorization status of newly hired employees, creating a complex and confusing web of laws and regulations. This is Trend Number 8 of the fifth annual  ‘Employment Screening Resources (ESR) Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Offshoring Personally Identifiable Information Outside of US Increases Concern Over Privacy and Identity Theft

A new California law due to take effect January 1, 2012 – Senate Bill 909 (SB 909) – appears to be one of the first in the nation that addresses the growing concerns over the controversial practice of “offshoring” personally identifiable information (PII) collected during background checks of job applicants by sending the data outside of United States and its territories and beyond the protection of U.S. privacy and identity theft laws. This is Trend Number 9 of the fifth annual Employment Screening Resources (ESR) ‘Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Self Background Checks Proactively Conducted by Job Seekers to Help Verify Accuracy of their Public Information

If jobseekers want to get hired for a job these days, they will probably have to undergo a background check. And if they have to undergo a background check, it would be in their best interest to make sure the information found on the background check is accurate, up-to-date, and complete. As a result, some jobseekers are taking matters in their own hands by proactively conducting “self” background checks on themselves to verify the accuracy of their public information. This is Trend #10 on the list of the fifth annual Employment Screening Resources (ESR) ‘Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

New Class Action Lawsuit against Major Financial Institution for FCRA Violations Demonstrates Importance of Legal Compliance

A class action case filed against a large financial institution – one of the nation’s top 10 banks – shows once again that legal compliance is a critical part of any background screening program.  The lawsuit was filed on behalf of an employee alleging violations of the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). According to a press release from the Attorneys for the Plaintiff, the lawsuit alleges that the financial institution obtained background checks in violation of the FCRA and failed to provide required notices.  The Plaintiff seeks to represent a class of all of the financial institution’s employees and job applicants for the past three years. Continue reading

SHRM Study Finds More than Half of Employers Favor Drug Testing Job Applicants

A recently released study examining the use of drug testing programs by employers conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and commissioned by the Drug and Alcohol Testing Association (DATIA) found that more than half of employers (57 percent) conduct drug tests on all job candidates. Continue reading

Class Action Lawsuit Demonstrates Importance of Employers following the Fair Credit Reporting Act

A class action lawsuit that was allowed to go forward by a federal district court earlier this year underscores the importance of employers following the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) when conducting background checks, and working with background screening firms that help educate employers on following basic procedures.

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