A background check is no threat to the security of a business. On the contrary, properly conducted background checks provide significantly improved security but also demand more security in other areas. Here are some of the measures that should be in place:

Assess your sources

If you perform your own background checks, it is important that you know who to contact. Avoid using sources you get from others, or which can not be verified by an official website or relevant databases. If you are unsure whether the source is real and genuine, check with providers of background checks, the embassy of the country concerned, public authorities or ask for a second opinion from someone who has experience / background in the industry, service or location.

Pay special attention to sources that are not on LinkedIn, or a reply from a different address than the one that belongs to the business.

Safe storage

All of the documentation in the recruitment process should be properly stored and inaccessible to unauthorized persons. The same applies to results from the background check, not only the elements the company has checked internally, but also what is done by an external partner.

Storage in the cloud is considered as safe as physical storage in file cabinets, but requires that you choose a provider that has reasonable security solutions in place. Read more on NorSIS

Not sure how long you can store the results of the background check? See what The Norwegian Data Inspectorate says here. (Sorry, only in Norwegian)

Collaborate internally

A background check is not only a responsibility for HR, but also an area for the HES or Security Officer. As well one should consider the risks and possible solutions, and take reasonable measures to safeguard both the business and the candidate’s security requirements.

Evaluate your partners & vendors

The same challenges and problems of security applies not only to employment but also to the selection of partners and suppliers. Who controls the reception and internal security of the building where the business has its activities? Remember that they may have the same access (sometimes better) to facilities and infrastructure where information is stored.

Who has access and provides goods? Who have you outsourced recruitment or a background check to? The company should be able to require the same level of safety, quality assurance and procedures from their own suppliers. It is no good having good procedures if your suppliers don’t.

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