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  Oracle Tips by Burleson

Web Stalkers
Chapter 1 -
The Illusion of Anonymity

Finding Criminal History

“No, we verified his driving record here in our state for the past 18 months.”

“So you didn’t check his record where he lived two years ago and therefore didn’t know about the accident he caused killing a family of four?”

“No, we only checked this state.”

“So the deaths that he caused could have been prevented if you had only checked his driving record a little further back!”

A situation that flows along the lines of this fictional dialogue is the fear of every person responsible for hiring employees.  Concern for liability and protecting safety for all is an important reason for making criminal records publicly accessible.

In the above scenario, an applicant was hired when a limited background check policy did not reveal previous driving related issues.  The opposite scenario might be a situation where a person is turned down because of a minor infraction on their record that has little or nothing to do with the position for which they have applied.  It is possible that an error was made on the report and the negative data is incorrect.  In any instance in which negative action is taken based on the results of a background check, the candidate should be informed regarding the specifics used to make the decision.  This will allow the applicant to respond appropriately and attempt to correct the record, if needed.

Whether criminal records should be available to the public is a matter for debate, but for all practical purposes, they already are.  Most states have information on registered sex offenders available online.  The following web page,, contains links to every state with a known sex offender registry and allows the user to access information specific to their area.

The above text is an excerpt from:

Web Stalkers
Protect yourself from Internet Criminals & Psychopaths
ISBN 0-97-45993-9-5

by Donald K. Burleson, Stephen Andert

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