Busting 8 Myths About Background Check Organizations

Tammy Cohen, PHR, SHRM-CP

February 27 2024

Most HR leaders understand the importance of background screening candidates. However, there are several myths about the background screening industry that prevent businesses from running background checks. Have you heard one of these myths about working with a background search company? Let’s clear the air.

News of slow turnaround times and incorrect background checks gives business leaders reason to be skeptical. However, rumors that spread about the background search industry may prevent companies from safeguarding their hiring. Luckily, the best background check sites are busting these myths.

All background check organizations offshore their processing and support.

HR professionals know the importance of a positive workplace. How a company operates strongly impacts its performance and relationships. This explains why the first myth about the background screening industry makes some business leaders skeptical. 

Many people believe that background search companies offshore most of their operations. This is true for some. However, plenty of background screening vendors operate within the United States.

We’re one of them! InfoMart promotes most of its leaders from within and regularly trains employees to update processes. This approach improves customer relationships by making it easy to provide great support. It also improves background check compliance, shortens turnaround times, and improves accuracy.

For international searches, the best background check site will partner with that country’s local experts. At InfoMart, our in-house team reviews results sourced in other countries. This extra step ensures every record meets the same standards

Background check organizations only match criminal records based on an applicant’s name.

Most background checks include criminal history results, but some background check organizations report “name-match-only” cases. This means only a name links your candidate to the criminal record. The best background check site will also include basic information like a date of birth and a social security number. This may lead to costly mistakes on a background check report.

Some companies are giving a bad reputation to the industry. Trusted background screening vendors use a tool called SSN Trace (Social Security Number Trace). This provides an extra layer of security when verifying a candidate’s identity. Plus, tracing a candidate’s social security number may reveal additional information.

At a minimum, your background screening vendor should check at least two personal identifiers when conducting criminal record searches. This might be a date of birth, social security number, driver’s license number, address history, and more. If necessary, a professional background check vendor will ask courts to provide additional information. SSN Trace mitigates the risk of mistaking a candidate’s identity when running a background check.

All background check organizations run automated background checks.

Some background check sites claim to be free and fast. However, they often rely on a database search and lack any human quality assurance.

However, most professional background search companies combine automation and manual work. This helps background check companies obtain criminal records efficiently. That could mean talking to a courthouse or conducting an online database search.

While an automated background check on employees may keep turnaround times down, it can’t replace the expertise of an FCRA-certified professional. Your best bet when making employment decisions is working with a background check vendor who has the best of both worlds – great integrations and a staff of experts.

Background search companies don’t bother to comply with state or local laws.

Background check compliance plays a huge role in safeguarding companies from hiring woes. Some background check sites skip over compliance to make a quick buck, but most professional background searchers put compliance at the core of their operations. One way they do this is by requiring analysts to have an up-to-date Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) certification. This keeps background check teams informed about regulations and the needs of their clients.

Hundreds of laws governing screening. One way InfoMart keeps ourselves and our clients compliant is through automatic compliance filters. This gets much of the technical work done, then the report goes through quality assurance. We regularly maintain these filters to account for changing legislation.

A background check vendor cares only about their clients and not the applicants.

The best background check site will understand the importance of a good candidate experience. When background search companies run a background check on employees or candidates, they act as an extension of their clients’ brands. If the background check process is difficult for the candidate, it reflects poorly on both the screening company and the hiring employer. To choose the best background check provider, look for one with candidate support built into its customer service.

InfoMart’s dedicated Applicant Advocates team is solely committed to helping applicants with their background checks. Plus, our candidate-facing platform makes submitting personal information a breeze. Work with a background search company that makes a candidate’s journey painless and mobile-friendly.

The major leaders in background screening buy other companies to grow their reach and tech.

Buyouts have been on the rise in the background screening industry, so this myth is not too far off. However, some top background check organizations still keep things running in-house.

At InfoMart, we use technology created by our team of developers. Keeping processes in-house aids with consistency. It also allows for full control over technology upgrades, mitigating issues with integrations and spotty reporting.

Small businesses don’t need background checks

Small businesses have the most to lose if they hire the wrong candidate. Often, smaller companies grant more access to employees because everyone has to pitch in to keep things running. If you don’t verify that a job applicant has the right skill set, they might harm your client relationships, your technology, and ultimately your bottom line.

The types of background checks run by small businesses are similar to those run by larger companies. Find a background check vendor with a program designed for small businesses.


“Those with a criminal background could potentially compromise your company’s data security, which would be detrimental to your company. It is worthwhile to do background checks because you would not want to hire someone who could potentially harm your company in any way.”

— Jared Hines, Acre Gold

All background screening companies are basically the same.

Not all CRAs are created equal. Like any industry, a background search company’s leadership and values make a huge difference. As a woman-owned background check company with over 30 years of experience, InfoMart is ready to tackle any screening challenges our clients have.

InfoMart has the technology, expertise, and industry knowledge to create a screening program that fits your company’s needs. With a fully FCRA-certified staff centralized in our Atlanta headquarters, InfoMart still operates on the same foundation of quality and connection it was built on decades ago. That doesn’t stop us from innovating, either. We once pioneered the screening industry, and we are always working to innovate as times change.

Ready to learn more? Let’s get you on the path to reliable pre-employment background checks. Reach out to an InfoMart sales representative today or read more about our services like criminal history, SSN Trace, driver records, and more here.

Wondering what to ask to choose the best background check partner? We’ve got the resources to help:


6 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Screening Partner


The Ultimate Checklist for Integrating Background Checks & HR Tech


What’s Included in a Background Check: An FAQ



About Tammy Cohen

Tammy Cohen, an industry pioneer and expert in identity and employment screening, founded InfoMart 30 years ago. Deemed the “Queen of Screen,” she’s been a force behind industry-leading innovations. She was most recently the first-to-market with a fully compliant sanctions search, as well as a suite of identity services that modernizes talent onboarding. Tammy revolutionized the screening industry when she stepped into the field, developing the first client-facing application and a due diligence criminal search that has since become standard for all background screening companies. Cohen has received national awards and honors for her business and civic involvement, including Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Top 25 Women-Owned Firms in Atlanta, Enterprising Women Magazine’s Enterprising Women of the Year award, the YWCA of Northwest Georgia’s Kathryn Woods Racial Justice Award, and a commendation in the 152nd Congressional Record.

About InfoMart

InfoMart has been revolutionizing the global background and identity screening industry for 30 years, providing businesses the information they need to make informed hiring decisions. They develop innovative technology that modernizes talent onboarding, including a first-to-market biometric identity authentication application and a verified sanctions search. The WBENC-certified company is a founding member of the Professional Background Screening Association, and they have achieved PBSA accreditation in recognition of their consistent business practices and commitment to compliance with the FCRA. The company is dedicated to customer service, speed, and accuracy, and it has been recognized for its success, workplace culture, and corporate citizenship with over 45 industry awards. To Get the Whole Story on InfoMart, please visit, follow @InfoMartUSA, or call (770) 984-2727.

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