Does your due diligence background check consist solely of instant database searches?

Many people believe that conducting an accurate due diligence background check is simple as typing a subject’s name into a search engine or into one of the numerous and inexpensive business databases that instantly printout a results. Nevertheless, this approach can sometimes deliver results that are useless to anyone looking to make a sound business decision.

“The accuracy of the information you get from an instant database search is as only good as the accuracy of the information you put into it to conduct the search.” 

How accurate is the database you are searching?

Information contained in databases you search can vary greatly and is only as good as the information received from the various government agencies. Not all state and national regulatory agencies as well as the courts (i.e. federal, state, or local) contribute to databases, thus information may be missing. You should also determine how often a database is updated before relying on it for your business due diligence screening programs.

“The status of court records can change greatly over weeks and months so it is important to know how often a database is updated. Not only does the lack of updating databases impact criminal records, but it can affect what a database finds in regards to civil matters, bankruptcies, tax liens, and government sanction lists.”

Instant database searches can give a false sense of security and may not help your company meet its background check compliance goals.

  • It is not uncommon for a database search to come back as clear even when records exist.
  • How do you know the results are related to your subject?  Many databases do not contain identifiers such as social security numbers or dates of birth.
  • Will your search pick up name changes or aliases?

Concerned about your current due diligence background check program?

Be proactive.

About the Author: Dennis E. Drellishak Sr. is the CEO and founder of Corporate Screening and recognized as a leading authority in the business information services industry. He has more than 30 years of experience forming, growing, leading and managing successful employment screening and business investigation service organizations. is a service of Corporate Screening & Investigations, Inc. that provides customizable background checks for business to business relationships. Our services include background checks for Business Relationship Screening, Company Officer Screening, Customer Due Diligence (CDD), Enhanced Due Diligence (EDD), Know Your Customer (KYC) Screening, and Anti Money Laundering (AML) compliance programs.