What Is a Consumer Background Report?

By Franklin Dwight
Consumer reports, a job screening technique

Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Freshview

Employers are becoming increasingly cautious regarding who they hire. Background reports are a way for employers to dig into your past to discover any acts of indiscretion which may disqualify you from being hired or promoted. (see Reference 1)

Significance

Consumer background reports may only focus upon your credit history, but can also include criminal history, driving records, and interviews with friends. (see Reference 1; #5)

Function

According to the Federal Trade Commission, one of the main intentions of conducting consumer background reports is to identify financially responsible applicants. (see Reference 2)

Considerations

The Fair Credit Reporting Act requires employers to get your written permission before conducting consumer background reports. (see Reference 1, #5)

Effects

The information that a employer receives from a consumer background report can result in a negative employment decision such as not getting hired or promoted. (see Reference 2)

Prevention/Solution

To prepare yourself for a background check, review the following to ensure they are accurate: credit reports, court records and DMV records. (see Reference 1; #9)

About the Author

Franklin Dwight is a writer and consultant from the Midwest. He is a graduate of Northern State University with a Bachelor of Arts in sociology. His work has been featured in several online editions of South Dakota newspapers.

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