Category Archives: Recent Posts

San Luis Obispo Court Responds to Criticism over Limiting Public Access to Criminal Records by Citing Privacy Concerns

After the recent closure of a public access computer that had allowed searches of criminal and traffic records led to criticism that public information was now less accessible, the San Luis Obispo (CA) Superior Court officials cited “privacy concerns over outdated criminal and victim information” that was “exposed to background checking contractors” as a reason why the Court removed the public computer terminal on March 19, according to a report in the San Luis Obispo (SLO) Tribune, ‘SLO court closes public computer.’ Continue reading

Alabama E-Verify Law Requiring Businesses to Enroll in E-Verify by April 1 No April Fools Joke

All businesses in Alabama must enroll in the federal E-Verify employment eligibility verification system by April 1, 2012, and this is no April Fools’ Joke. According to ‘The Alabama Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act’ (H.B. 56), considered by many to be the toughest immigration enforcement measure in the country to date, every Alabama business – regardless of size – must enroll in E-Verify by the April 1 deadline to be in compliance with the law or else they could lose their licenses for failing to abide by the law. The full text of Alabama Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act is at: http://www.openbama.org/index.php/bill/fulltext/3154. Continue reading

Internet Dating Safety Act Requiring Online Dating Sites to Disclose Background Check Policy Passes Illinois Senate

The Illinois Senate has passed legislation – Senate Bill 2545 (SB 2545) – that would create the ‘Internet Dating Safety Act’ requiring online dating websites offering services in Illinois to clearly disclose if they perform criminal background checks on members, according to a press release on the website of the bill’s sponsor Senator Ira Silverstein (D-Chicago). SB 2545, which passed in the Senate 42 to 9, will next move to the House, where a similar bill has won committee approval. The full text of SB 2545 is available here. Continue reading

FTC Report on Protecting Consumer Privacy Recommends Businesses Adopt Best Privacy Practices

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a final report – ‘Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change: Recommendations For Businesses and Policymakers’ – outlining best practices for businesses to protect the privacy of American consumers and give them greater control over the collection and use of their personal data, according to an FTC press release. The FTC also recommends that Congress consider enacting general privacy legislation, data security and breach notification legislation, and data broker legislation. The report, which expands on a preliminary report the FTC issued in December 2010, is available at: http://www.ftc.gov/os/2012/03/120326privacyreport.pdf. Continue reading

Top Background Check Trends for 2012 Examined in Webinar on March 28

Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, founder and CEO of background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present a live webinar titled “The Top 10 Background Check Trends for 2012” on Wednesday, March 28 at 3:00 p.m. ET (12:00 p.m. PT). Rosen will help businesses examine the latest trends, best practices, and legal compliance issues of pre-employment background screening. For more information about the webinar, presented with Avant Resources Business Education, visit: http://www.esrcheck.com/Newsletter/ESR-Speaks/The-Top-10-Background-Check-Trends-for-2012-128/. Continue reading

Facebook Warns Employers Asking Job Applicants for Social Media Passwords May Expose Businesses to Legal Liability

Responding to an increase in reports of employers seeking to gain “inappropriate access” to social network profiles of job applicants, online social media giant Facebook issued a warning to employers in a recent blog posted on the company website – ‘Protecting Your Passwords and Your Privacy’ – that the practice of asking job applicants for their social media passwords “undermines the privacy expectations and the security of both the user and the user’s friends” and could potentially expose businesses to “unanticipated legal liability.” The blog is available at: http://www.facebook.com/notes/facebook-and-privacy/protecting-your-passwords-and-your-privacy/326598317390057. Continue reading

San Luis Obispo County Impedes Access to Public Criminal Records for Background Checks

According to the Public Record Update Newsletter for March 2012, a Public Record Retriever Network (PRRN) Member reports that the San Luis Obispo (California) Superior Court has taken steps to impede criminal record searches for background checks in the county by putting the public record access terminals under lock and key and making them off limits to professional public record researchers and private background screening firms. One reason for impeding access to background screening firms and mandating rules that discourage background checks is that the Court Executive Officer believes employers should instead use background checks performed by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Continue reading

Three Leading Online Dating Websites Agree to Use Background Checks to Protect Members from Sex Offenders

California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and three of the nation’s leading online dating websites – eHarmony, Match.com, and Spark Networks – have issued a ‘JOINT STATEMENT OF KEY PRINCIPLES OF ONLINE DATING SITE SAFETY’ that online dating providers should follow to help protect members from sexual predators through background checks, the California Office of the Attorney General (OAG) announced in a press release on the OAG website. A copy of the joint agreement, which also aims to protect online dating website members from identity theft and financial scams, is available online at: http://ag.ca.gov/cms_attachments/press/pdfs/n2647_agreement.pdf?. Continue reading

Dangers of Background Check Firms Offshoring Personal Data of Americans Outside of US Revealed in Whitepaper

To alert U.S.-based employers and job seekers about the potential dangers caused by background check firms “offshoring” Personally Identifiable Information (PII) to countries such as India and the Philippines, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is offering a new whitepaper on the subject. The whitepaper written by ESR founder and CEO Attorney Lester Rosen is titled ‘The Dangers of Offshoring Personally Identifiable Information (PII) Outside of United States’ and details the hazards of sending PII to counties that are well beyond the reach of U.S. privacy and identity theft laws. The complimentary whitepaper is available at: http://www.esrcheck.com/Download/. Continue reading

Colorado Bill Restricting Credit Report Checks of Job Applicants for Employment Screening Defeated

A State House committee in Colorado has voted to defeat legislation – SB-3, The ‘Employment Opportunity Act’ – that would have restricted the use of credit report checks of job applicants by employers for employment screening, The Denver Post reports, and the vote against SB-3 “ran along party lines with six Republicans voting against five Democrats on the committee.” The full Post story is at: http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_20208956/house-panel-kills-bill-stop-credit-check-job. Continue reading