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Tuesday, March 21st
BeenVerified got its start in 2007 and is based in New York City. For one monthly price, you can perform up to 100 monthly background checks that include searching by name, address, email, social media, vehicle info, and business name.
The search process at BeenVerified is unnecessarily tedious. When you start by entering a name, there's no immediate way to provide more details to narrow it down (like state, age). You have to wait until it processes the name search to provide further details, and then answer further questions about the type of information you're looking for, giving BeenVerified your name and email address, and waiting for the databases to be searched. All told, it took just under 10 minutes to get to the BeenVerified checkout page.
Match or no match?
And even at that, we were given no way of knowing if our search had matched up records with the correct person. Most background check platforms show you a preview - age, known addresses, aliases, and so on - so that you can determine if it's worth it to sign up. Not here. You'll have to jump right in with a payment of either $26.89 for a one-month recurring membership or $52.44 for a three-month subscription. We were glad to see that the company promises a refund if you're unhappy with your search results, because there's no way of knowing in advance if they're even remotely on target.
Numerous customer complaints
Despite those guarantees, BeenVerified falls flat on its face when it comes to customer satisfaction, reflected by the company's "B" rating from the BBB. Numerous complaints there and elsewhere describe canceling the service during a trial period (which we never saw being offered), being told that it's been terminated, only to discover later that the monthly fees were still being deducted from bank and credit card accounts. That's unacceptable. Beyond that, many users say that reports from Been Verified are grossly inaccurate, not only missing important records that are known to exist (like arrests) but including details that are just plain wrong. You can't count on any BeenVerified results to be correct.
Waste of time
BeenVerified comes across as a big waste of time: you'll spend 10-20 minutes just getting to the checkout page, without being given a single indicator of what may be included in your report, and then you may find that it's all inaccurate anyway. And good luck if you think you've successfully canceled your account, because you may still see charges months after the fact. We have a hard time finding anything to recommend about this background check platform, and you'll have a smoother experience with a higher-ranked service.
You're already well aware of the fact that you can find out lots about people with a simple Google search, but what if you need to know more? There are plenty of reasons to pay for a background check, from vetting your newest love interest to making sure a childcare provider doesn't have a criminal past.
These paid platforms can access records that won't show up in a traditional search - and they save you time by pulling together information from thousands of databases into one place. When you run a background check, most services will give you two tiers of pricing: basic and "premium" . What's the difference? A basic search typically renders results showing a person's known aliases (like maiden names) and relatives, address history, phone number, email addresses, and possibly social media accounts.
To get to the kinds of records you've probably got in mind, like criminal and court proceedings, you'll have to upgrade to the premium service. That may be included as an add-on to a monthly subscription cost or as a one-off fee each time you conduct a search.
As you consider whether or not to conduct a background check, it's important to understand that some uses are strictly prohibited - and every service will require you to acknowledge those limitations at some point during the process (usually with an "I accept" or "I agree" checkbox). Identified as FCRA (short for Fair Credit Reporting Act), this regulation means that you can't use a background check service to influence decisions on employment, tenant applications, insurance, and several other scenarios. There are a small number of services that offer FCRA compliant searches, but expect to pay accordingly.
No matter which background check service you ultimately select, there's one good reason to visit more than one site: to protect your privacy by requesting that your own records be removed from their listings. Look for a link at the bottom of the site that says "Opt Out" or "Do Not Sell My Information" . From there, you'll either conduct a search for your own records (at no cost) or provide the URL you got when you looked up your own profile previously. Once you click the link sent in a confirmation email, it can take several business days for your info to be deleted (though we've seen it happen almost instantly as well).
With so many platforms offering background checks, which one is right for you? Keep in mind these criteria as you make your decision:
To help you get all of the information you need. TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked the most popular background search providers available today. Are you ready to find out more about your neighbor, date, or coworker? Choose one of our highest-ranked services and see what you discover!
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