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Why Database Searches Do Not Compare to Real Investigations

Posted On   date14/05/2015

Why Database Searches Do Not Compare to Real Investigations

Many reputable private investigation and background check investigation companies often hear people asking to fulfill their employment screening processes with background check packages or “searches”.  The truth is, relying on generic database searches or public records websites to verify individuals is simply not possible, and a very reckless approach to risk management.  In most cases, searching databases is of little to no value.  Proper verification of individuals and companies requires skilled investigators.

In international cases that are by nature higher risk and more difficult to verify, relying on such websites and searches is dangerous and ill-advised, as most developing countries have no infrastructure where databases are accessible.  The company or website you’re dealing with might not even have an investigator or office in the country, let alone speak the language.  How could they possibly obtain meaningful evidence?  This article will help explain the differences between real background check investigations and websites selling a worthless service.

Many companies are beginning to realize the shortcomings and high risk nature of using such generic services.  Searching criminal records, for example, is not a background check investigation and by itself not an effective method of verifying candidates.  Even Osama bin Laden, the Muslim terrorist responsible for the 2001 terrorist attacks, had no prior criminal or court records.  Some companies are surprised to learn they’ve hired someone who lied about their experience, or who turn out to be a fraud, after having passed a “background check” process.

A typical background check investigation from Wymoo International includes education and employment verification, reference checks, public and media records, criminal and court records, verification of ID or passport, document verification, travel records and fraud screening. Each case is assigned to a trained private investigator and any red flags are also identified in a comprehensive and narrative report.

The quality of services offered varies dramatically, and there are many reasons why it’s important to get a real background check investigation.  Below we will highlight the most important points, and how you can be sure you’re protecting yourself and your company.

Resume Fraud Risk

On a global scale, more than half of the resumes a recruiter receives contain false information. The employment market is a very competitive one, and many people have turned to lying on their resumes or CV to increase their chances of getting the job.

Recruiters and human resources staff need to be especially keen about top corporate executives and people who will be undertaking great responsibilities.  A bad hire at the management or executive level can lead to negative publicity, bankruptcy or even criminal charges!   Given this situation, databases are hardly of any help because no convicted crime is on record, and even if there is a record, you may not know where to search.  This is why it is so important to have a professional investigator verify the entire background of a candidate.  Professional background check investigations verify previous employment and also obtain independent references on character and performance.

Accurate information and clear evidence will allow a recruiter or HR manager to make a good hiring decision and keep the company moving forward with limited risk.  There is no database that can properly verify a candidate’s employment history.

Expert background check investigations verify all known employment and education history, as well as identity red flags such as past bankruptcies, poor work performance, lawsuits, resume discrepancies, and screen the case for fraud.  Trained private investigators uncover as much evidence as possible, using database searches to supplement cases when needed, but never relying on them alone.

Getting the Whole Picture

Some Human Resource professionals like to play the role of a private detective, although more and more companies are now putting an end to this practice.  HR managers should focus on what they know best, and leave the investigating to those who specialize in that field.  With that said, a reputable private investigation firm can customize cases to meet your needs, and verify specific elements of an individual’s background based on your unique situation.  Part of an investigators job is to advise clients on how to best mitigate risk.

If you’re considering doing business or hiring an individual overseas, you are at especially high risk and should speak to an investigator about your options.  International background checks require highly trained investigators on the ground where you need them, who have access to local records, speak the language, and can obtain key evidence.  If you’ve recently met someone on the Internet and are considering the person for a personal, romantic or business relationship, don’t be a victim of fraud or scam!  Speak to an investigator about how to stay safe.

The International Risk

Relying on cheap database searches and public records websites for information is a dangerous game even in the United States.  Information is often of little or no value, and can be outdated or inaccurate. Remember the old adage you get what you pay for!  Expect to pay realistic prices if  you need actual investigation and clear answers.   In most cases, consumers are disappointed with the generic and automated results they get from database search websites, and then turn to private investigators for advice.

In international cases, using database searches should NEVER be part of your verification process.  Developing countries with high risk do not have the same access to information and database infrastructure as developed countries.  If you pay someone for a database search in South Africa, Ukraine, Russia, Romania, Philippines, Malaysia, Nigeria, Ghana, Brazil, Colombia, China or India, you’ve just had your money stolen!  Countries like these require a trained investigator on the ground who can check local office and agencies and manually obtain the records and evidence.

Paying a Realistic Price

In case you haven’t wondered already, ask yourself what you can buy these days for less than $100.  Not much.  Unfortunately, professional services in any industry costs money, and real professional investigations and background check services are no different.  If you’ve found a very cheap service that claims to offer the world all at a very cheap price, chances are you’re being scammed.  There is no free lunch.  If you’re serious about staying safe and minimizing your risk, expect to pay a realistic price.  If you come across a website offering “background checks” for $39.99 or even $99, this is a dead give away you’re not paying for an actual investigation, and the information you receive won’t be of any value.

Wymoo International has highly trained private investigators on the ground in over 100 countries.  We speak the language, we have access to local records around the globe, and we verify individuals and companies on a comprehensive scale.  Our rates are very competitive and we beat pricing offered by most small private investigator companies or individuals.  The industry standard pricing for background check investigations usually starts at $300 to $500 USD, and can vary depending on your needs and the country or countries involved.

We offer significant volume discounts to corporate customers with repeat orders, or clients with multiple cases.  Consumers and businesses should think of professional background check services as a form of insurance.  The services can be somewhat costly, but in the long run, real background checks save you time and money.  Don’t be a victim of fraud or scam.  If you need a dating background check investigation, an employment screening or international due diligence, get it done right the first time!  Contact us today for a free quote.

C. Wright
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