What is an International Background Check?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 10 October 2019
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An international background check is generally used by potential employers to screen candidates who may be hired by the company. Public and private records may be searched using various international databases in order for the employer to learn about past criminal charges a person may have, along with their credit history. This procedure is especially important when screening potential childcare workers, police officers, and government officials.

Companies may perform an international background check when they either have operations in more than one country, or a job candidate has lived in more than one country. This allows them to find information about the person's criminal past in various locations. Most times only felony charges will be noted or held against the person, but this is not always the case. Some employers have more stringent guidelines than others.

Specific things may be looked for when doing an international background check, depending on the industry in which the person may be working. For example, someone who is applying for a job in childcare will likely be looked over to ensure he has no history of violence or abuse with children. Similarly, someone who wishes to work in government may have to have a record completely clean of any criminal convictions.


Sometimes a person's credit history will also be checked during an international background check. This is primarily important if the person will be hired to handle money, such as in the case of an accountant. If an employee can't handle his or her own money effectively, then it's likely the company's funds would not be handled much better.

In order to perform an international background check, a company may hire an outside source. There are professionals who do criminal screenings and credit checks using large databases. These databases generally require a fee for membership and access. Hiring someone to perform the check is often a less expensive option for companies that do not hire employees frequently, or who do not run background checks on all new hires.

For those who do frequently have to do background checks on employee candidates, it's generally possible for the employer to subscribe to each database and do the check himself. He may also choose to hire someone in human resources to handle all background checks. Databases are generally accessed online through a specialized website and the cost for subscribing to each one may vary based on the site.


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Post 2

A background check is not just checking criminal records, and to suggest this would be negligence.

A professional background check investigation goes far beyond the simple world of Human Resources. International background checks and due diligence services are used by corporations, investors, governments and individuals to verify and investigate factors ranging from criminal records, credit and civil records, marriage and divorce history, travel records, character and reputation, document and travel and passport verification, employment and education history, etc, etc.

A professional background investigation is a comprehensive service and checking criminal records is only a small piece of the puzzle for any professional international background check firm or reputable international private investigator.

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