Criminal Verification

Criminal verification entails checking a person’s criminal history to assess his or her trustworthiness. It is not practically possible for the HR executives to screen through all the applicants for criminal records. This is a massive task and requires a lot of time and in depth analysis of the nature of criminal records.

What is Criminal Verification?

The police records are available at different levels – national (National Crime Records Bureau), state, city/town/district, and local police station. While the records are computerized at NCRB and most of the state levels, they may not be available in electronic form at most of the district and local police station levels. The Home Ministry has embarked on Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems(CCTNS) project to link all the police stations and offices across the country and the fully-integrated system is expected to be available in 2012. It is not known to what extent the information will be made available for public access.

Therefore, in the interim, the criminal records have to be accessed at the state, district, or police station level by physically visiting the specific office and requesting the criminal background verification.

Challenges

  • Criminal verification in India is more difficult as there are no Felony or Misdemeanor courts in India like western nations. Instead, India has Police Departments of various states and metros. With each Indian state having its own system of functioning, and absence of computerized database in many cases, as almost all records are filed manually, it becomes difficult to verify criminal records.
  • If a person has resided in more than one address in the same city or at different cities, separate searches as per concerned police station of the area of residence must be conducted.
  • Theoretically, to get a complete criminal background check done, all the state, district and local police station records need to be reviewed. This would ensure that even if the employee to be verified has moved locations, the records can be accessed.

Our recommendation: Criminal verification should be done at least at the police station levels for the temporary and permanent addresses of the employee. Additional locations for previous addresses should be considered based on the nature of the business, job profile, and responsibilities.