By Thomas Ahearn, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) News Editor

In an exclusive interview on the top background screening trends of 2011, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) President and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen discusses the challenges of social media background checks, the importance of credit reports in screening, and how organizations can perform background screening more effectively. To learn more, visit

While there is no hotter trend in background screening currently than social media, just as social networks can be used to background screen applicants, they also can be abused. As part of Bank Information Security Podcasts for on the Insights on the Hottest Trends in Background Screening, Rosen talked to Editorial Director Tom Field on subject matter titled ‘Beware of Social Media for Background Screening.’

“Employers are using social media to not only look at people initially, bit for ongoing screening as well for current employees,” says Lester Rosen, who founded Employment Screening Resources (ESR), a San Francisco-area background screening firm accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), in 1996.

However, this hot new trend – using social media like blogs, Facebook, and Twitter for background checks – comes with a caveat: Is it too much information? “Through social media, for the first time perhaps in human history, employers are able to literally look inside someone’s head. It’s a real treasure trove of information,” Rosen says. “You’re going to learn all sorts of things as an employer that you don’t want to know and legally can not be the basis of a decision.”

Social media background checks are just one of the hottest background screening trends employers should study. In the interview, Rosen discusses the Employment Screening Resources 4th Annual ‘Top Ten Trends in Background Screening’ for 2011, including:

  • Challenges of social media background checks;
  • The importance of credit reports in background checks; and
  • How organizations can background screen more effectively.

Rosen, a retired attorney, is a consultant, writer, and frequent presenter nationwide on pre-employment screening and safe hiring issues. He is the author of ‘The Safe Hiring Manual – The Complete Guide to Keeping Criminals, Imposters, and Terrorists Out of Your Workplace’ and is also the key presenter in a Bank Information Security Webinar ‘Avoid Negligent Hiring – Best Practices and Legal Compliance in Background Checks.’ To learn more, visit

Employment Screening Resources ‘Top Ten Trends in Background Screening’ for 2011 is at

Founded in 1996 in the San Francisco area, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by ESR founder and President Lester Rosen and is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) . To learn more about Employment Screening Resources, visit or contact Jared Callahan, ESR Director of Client Relations, at 415.898.0044 or [email protected].