3 Things That TV Crime Shows Get Wrong About Background Checks

Crime investigation shows on television always seem to carry out background checks on what can seem like everyone. Every suspect in a case receives a background check and most of the time all the witnesses receive a background check as well. However television programmes are not a perfect reflection of reality and sometimes they get things wrong. When it comes to background checks there are three big things that most television crime shows tend to get wrong about them. If you are wondering what these things are then you had better continue reading.

Background Checks Can Take A Long Time

In most of the major crime investigations shows, for example Fringe and CSI, all it takes to request and receive a background check is one short phone call. From when the initial phone call is made it usually only takes a short amount of time before the background check is completed and all the necessary files are on a person’s desk. Unless the background check is extremely high priority and there a number of different people working on it, in reality this isn’t the case. Background checks can often take a number of days to carry out and complete as there is a lot of data that needs to be collected, the more people whose backgrounds need checking the longer it will take.

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A Computer Cannot Bring Up Everything That Is Needed To Make Up A Background Check

When a background check is carried out on a television programme it usually shows an image of one person typing away on a single computer and finding all the information that is needed. This just isn’t possible as background checks bring up a number of different things from a number of different databases. Criminal records, credit history, medical history and a person’s previous addresses are not just stored on one central databases that can be accessed in a few click but are dispersed between lots of different databases. Also some information that is needed for a thorough background check cannot be gathered from just using a computer. In order to get the best information about a persons background there needs to be people working in the field that are uncovering information that will not be stored in databases. For example if you are trying to find out whether or not a person has hidden assets, you might not find the information you need from their payment history as they may be dealing with cash payments instead.

Anyone Can Run A Background Check

Crime investigation shows tend to give out the impression that only people who work for the police or the FBI can carry out background checks. This isn’t true as anyone can have a background check carried out on someone if they want to. You don’t have to have access to a police database in order to be able to have a background check conducted. People get background checks carried out all the time, for example employers have them conducted on their employees and prospective employees, also landlords often screen tenants before they sign any contracts.

So when watching crime shows on television always bear in mind that not everything they do isentirely accurate as in the real world things may be much different.

This is a guest post by Frank Adams. Occasional guest blogger on asset search and full time on line privacy.  Frank currently represents Beacon Investigation Solutions a private investigation company licensed in 45 states across the US.

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