Background Check Errors and False Employment Reports: What You Need to Know

In recent years, background checks have become a core part of job applications, primarily as companies and services rely on them more to reduce risks when vetting potential employees. Unfortunately, though, even with the increase in the number of people applying for jobs, there have been many errors made. This may not seem like a big deal, but it can raise questions about how other companies handle their background checks and what other companies may be reporting about you. Here’s what you need to know about errors and false reports. Find here the best free background check sites.

What is a background check?

A background check is the process companies use to research an individual’s past actions and determines the likelihood of someone carrying out future bad activities. Background checks can be conducted through a variety of methods, but they typically follow three distinct pathways: 

Law enforcement: Employers use this to verify that an individual has no criminal history and is legally allowed to work in their field.

Social media: This is used to check information from sources like LinkedIn and other social media profiles.

Private databases: Employers use this to find information about current and former employees, like credit reports and records.

How do background checks work?

Your prospective employer will likely run a background check on you when you apply for a job. The information used in a background check varies depending on the source. For example, employers can typically find information from law enforcement records but may need to contact the department to access other sources. Depending on the job you’re applying for, you may be asked to provide additional information.

For example, you may be asked to give your date of birth and Social Security number to prove that you are who you say you are. You may also be asked to provide a copy of your resume to help the company get a better sense of your work history and skills. Once your information has been verified, it will likely be given to a third-party background check service. This service will then comb through public and private databases to find relevant information and return it to the company that requested the check.

Errors and false reports in background checks

There are a few reasons why background checks may produce errors or false reports. First, a lot of information that gets reported isn’t accurate. For example, an employer may mistakenly report that an individual has a felony conviction when they have a misdemeanor. Other times, information may be missing. For example, a person may have changed their name, but their birth records may have never been updated. But the most common reason for errors is human error. If someone working for a background check service makes a mistake, it can affect their reporting information on other people.

What you can do to protect your background check

Before you apply for a job, it’s good to check the company’s standards and review your own application to make sure nothing has slipped through the cracks. 

Review your resume: Make sure that you give the company the right information. If there’s anything you’re not sure about, double-check with the company.

Review your application: Make sure that you’re following all of the application guidelines, including any requirements for education or certifications.

Know your rights: It’s important to know what information you’re legally allowed to include on your application and resume. If you have questions, dig deeper into the application guidelines.

Also read: How do I incorporate AI copywriters into my business?


Background checks can help employers reduce risks by ensuring that their employees are qualified and safe to work with. This can help businesses avoid lawsuits or financial penalties if an employee causes harm to other people or causes financial damage to the business. However, background checks can produce errors or false reports. This can lead to issues when filling future jobs, like being passed over for a position because of a bad background check. Human-made errors are among the top causes of false reports. People working in background check providing services should keep in mind that the persons’ future somehow depends on them.