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December 29, 2016


Database Watch List Searches Vs. Verified Watch List

By Erica Clausen-Lee, Chief Strategy Officer

For years, employers have been searching through government watch list and federal debarment databases to verify that their applicants and employees are eligible to work for their companies. These databases can also tell a company if their new hire or current employee is a known terrorist, drug trafficker, high-profile offender, or other potential liability.


What to Look for in a Background Screening Vendor's Security Policy

However, a new service has entered the market that provides even better due diligence and peace of mind for employers: Verified Watch List.

InfoMart is the first in the industry to offer such a service, although many companies are sure to follow. As the importance of accurate and comprehensive applicant and employee information increases, so, too, will the need for verified services. Unverified and potentially harmful database searches will soon be a thing of the past.

The Inferiority of Current Government Watch List Searches

While many professional background screeners offer government watch list and federal debarment searches on employees and applicants, these searches have several shortcomings. Most of these databases are:

  • Name-Match Only – Many current databases hold only names and no other individual
    identifiers, such as date of birth (DOB) or Social Security Number (SSN).
  • Unverified – Because these databases are often populated with only names, records cannot
    be truly verified. You can’t be certain that your John Smith has a record, or if it’s someone
    else with the same name.
  • Unreliable or Inaccurate – As with many government databases, records may not be added
    or updated on a regular basis.

These deficiencies in current database searches mean that an employer cannot use the obtained information in an employment decision without possible legal repercussions, such as Title VII complaints, negligent hiring and retention cases, and more.

Why You Want Verified Watch List Searches

The inadequacies of current database searches inherently make your background screening program less reliable and can even attract legal consequences. Verified Watch List searches help you avoid negative consequences in several ways:

  • Reliable Sources – The Verified Watch List search examines records from sources such as
    the DEA, FBI, OFAC, OIG, and Interpol, among others, to provide the most comprehensive
    records search available.
  • Verified Records Match in More than Name-Only – If a potential record is found in any of
    the above databases, we will conduct a further search to verify the record and ensure record identification by both name and DOB or SSN.
  • FCRA Compliant – Unlike other government watch list and debarment searches, a Verified
    Watch List search meets Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) compliance requirements and can
    be used to determine employment eligibility.

Verified Watch List searches can assist your company in meeting due diligence requirements and creating a safer, more productive workplace. Find the right applicant to join your company with verified government watch list and debarment information that you can actually use in your hiring and retention decisions!


Go Verified

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