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While there are a lot of services offering background checks today, some are more thorough than others. Instant Checkmate definitely ranks up there with the best when it comes to checking for information.
One thing that stood out to us about the search process of Instant Checkmate: it has a box you can check if you're searching for your own information. When we checked that box, it asked us questions while the search was running, to help make sure it was coming up with the right records (for example, had we ever lived in a certain city, were we over the age of 30, and even if an individual was a relative). We did find the "Have you ever committed a crime?" question to be a little ominous!
Instant Checkmate found the right records for us, after a search process that took a couple of minutes to complete. We were then asked to answer another set of questions; in total, it took nearly 10 minutes to get to the place where we could order the report generated. There was a big red bar across the page warning us that there were more than 10 criminal records for people associated with our name in our state; given that we have a clear criminal background, that felt a little shady and meant to push us to buy their report.
Digging a little deeper, we found that there are two background check services operated by the same owners: Truthfinder and Instant Checkmate. Both services have solid ratings with the Better Business Bureau, so this is primarily for your own information as you consider which background check service will ultimately get your business.
Pricing was also slightly different between the two, so keep an eye out for the best deal. Pro tip: wait around awhile on the site. You may get a pop-up offering you a full-access, 5-day trial membership for $1.
The BBB has given this service both an A+ rating and accreditation, which is unusual within the industry. We found a higher number of positive reviews for Instant Checkmate than most other background check services on the market; the only thing keeping them from a first-place ranking is their higher prices, compared with their competition.
Intelius is part of the PeopleConnect family of products, which also includes the Classmates brand. Their services include people search, reverse phone lookup, background checks, and identity theft protection services.
Our experience with Intelius was very frustrating. First, when we entered several names, we got an error message and were told to try again later. We did that a number of times and continued to get the same message, so as the error page directed, we called the toll-free number. The automated voice thanked us for calling "Customer Service" - not mentioning Intelius or any other company's name - and connected us to a representative to told us to "try again in one hour". Several hours after our first attempt, we were able to search several names.
But, the pricing we received differed based on the name we entered. One name returned the prices listed at the top of the review: $19.95 to $49.95. Then for a different individual, we were given the options of a $39.95 one-time report, or "Premier Plus". This last offer confused us: "Try Intelius Premier Plus, and if you cancel within the first 7 days and have not yet used a background check voucher you pay only $7.95 . Otherwise, you will receive 1 background check voucher per month and be charged $29.95 each month you remain a member. Each voucher will expire in 30 days, if not used."
When we went to leave the site, we got a pop-up offering a discounted price of $24.95 for a background check, so there may be additional ways to save money if you decide to use Intelius' services.
According to the Intelius site, their background report includes the following:
But, unlike many services we tried, there was no way to see if the record we would be buying was a match with the person we were searching for. We entered the name, city, and state, which took us directly to a "buy report" page; Intelius' competitors usually show details like previous addresses, likely relatives, and even estimated age to help customers determine if the person is a match.
We like that Intelius has a long track record within the industry, and their "A" rating with the Better Business Bureau is a good indicator of attention to detail and to customer service. Unfortunately, this reputation wasn't enough to overcome the less-than-impressive experience we had with using the service, especially compared with other background checks currently on the market. We think most customers will get better results using one of the other services in our review.
Best Background Checks
To help you find the Best Background Checks, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Instant Checkmate and Intelius.
Warning: You may not use these services or the information they provide to make decisions about consumer credit, employment, insurance, tenant screening, or any other purpose that would require FCRA compliance.
What is the best background check service? Is your new girlfriend as trustworthy as she seems? Does your neighbor have a criminal record? These are just a few of the types of questions that motivate people to want to run a background check.
Background checks have been a regular part of life for many years, letting people to get a better idea of those individuals they interact with. Colleges and universities search social media profiles and work history before awarding scholarships or even granting admission to applicants. Families looking to adopt or be foster parents are checked to make sure there is no history of abuse or neglect.
Much of this information is also available to you through services offering background checks. Maiden names and aliases, cities of residence, even criminal and legal history are just a few of the types of information people can find when using these services.
You should be aware that, no matter which service you use, the results rendered are only as accurate as the public records databases which they use. The accuracy of this information is one of the factors that differentates the background check providers.
As you decide which background check service best meets your needs, keep in mind the following criteria:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best background check services available today. We hope these reviews help you find what - and who - you're searching for!
The Popularity of Background Checks
Daters are doing it. Neighbors are doing it. Even someone you know may be doing it.
So what is the "it" we're referring to here? Background checks.
With the top three online dating websites making background checks a requirement for using their service, the popularity of conducting such searches continues to grow. Even the government is considering tighter background checks for the purchase of firearms as part of a broader package on gun safety.
Not even social media is exempt from the long-reaching arm of the background check. While a person can make their social media accounts private, and be cautious of what they post about themselves, what they cannot control is what other people post about them. Embarrassing photos from last summer's pool party - where you were holding a beer in each hand as you belly-flopped into the pool - easily can surface on someone else's website or social media account. So even if you think you're being discreet, there is always the chance that someone else is not.
We already know that conducting background checks is becoming popular. But what kind of information frequently is sought out during a background check?
It's important to understand that sometimes background checks contain inaccurate and misleading information. This can be incredibly frustrating for someone who may be confused with another person of a similar name who has committed a crime. Just as ordering an annual credit report to check for errors is a good idea; it is advisable to occasionally conduct a background check on yourself for the same purposes.
Background Checks In The News
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - The New Hampshire House approved several bills Tuesday aimed at tightening the rules on gun purchases in the state, a dramatic shift in a state known to have some of the least ...
Published: Tue, 19 Mar 2019 16:41:00 GMT
CONCORD, N.H. - The House believes higher thresholds are needed for gun sales that are not done by federally licensed commercial dealers. The House Tuesday voted to expand background checks before ...
Published: Wed, 20 Mar 2019 11:03:00 GMT
CONCORD - The New Hampshire House on Tuesday passed two gun control bills, one requiring background checks for all firearms sales and another imposing a waiting period between the purchase and ...
Published: Tue, 19 Mar 2019 14:46:00 GMT
All applicants for a vacancy in the Niagara County Legislature now must go through a criminal and financial background check. The Legislature on Tuesday unanimously passed the Democratic minority ...
Published: Wed, 20 Mar 2019 11:42:00 GMT
The Lyon County Board of Commissioners plans to vote on a resolution opposing the state's recently passed gun background check law. The Lyon County Board of Commissioners plans to vote on a resolution ...
Published: Wed, 20 Mar 2019 12:40:00 GMT
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