A recent MTA OIG report conducted a “review of the background and criminal history verification process for the largest classification of employees (the Competitive Class) that MTA New York City Transit (NYC Transit or NYCT) hires.” The report concluded that the process used by the two agencies for “properly vett[ing Competitive Class hires is] significantly… Continue reading If you drive a glass MTA bus you should not throw stones
A recent article in the New York Times on O.J. Simpson’s parole hearing highlights the ongoing challenge of the FBI database as insufficient to understand a person’s criminal past. The August 11 story is Nevada Parole Board Unaware of O.J. Simpson’s Old Conviction. The story notes that “[d]uring [O.J. Simpson’s parole board] hearing on July… Continue reading FBI checks fall short — again
An recent article in the New York Times on O.J. Simpson’s parole hearing highlights the ongoing challenge of the FBI database as insufficient to understand a person’s criminal past. The August 11 story is Nevada Parole Board Unaware of O.J. Simpson’s Old Conviction. In it, it we are told that “[d]uring [O.J. Simpson’s parole board]… Continue reading New story, old problem: FBI data ineffective for national criminal check for employment or housing
Earlier this month, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities released a flawed report on background screenings that relied upon data findings that could violate consumer protections under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and state law if a non-government agency made those same findings. The report has been summarized in the… Continue reading Checking the Checks on Massachusetts Ridesharing Drivers
Recently, Lyft CEO John Zimmer was interviewed for NPR’s podcast, How I Built This. Zimmer was asked about his company’s criminal background checks and he discussed how his company offers better protection for riders than the fingerprint checks sometimes required of taxi drivers. He’s right.
There have been movements in the TSA and in Congress for the administration to clear name-based criminal background checks as a complement to or substitute for fingerprints for TSAPre(R). This is a worthwhile review.
When the infamous bank robber, Willie Sutton, was asked why he robbed banks, he replied simply, “because that’s where the money is.” If fingerprints are Coronado’s illusive “gold standard” than Fort Knox was robbed in 2015. The Washington Post reported that “[o]ne of the scariest parts of the massive cybersecurity breaches at the Office of… Continue reading Fingerprint Database: Hacked
The U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics surveyed state criminal history record repositories and found that in 2014, 43 states performed over 19.4 million name-based criminal background checks for non-criminal justice purposes. This clearly shows the power of name-based criminal checks for employment and other purposes to help protect the public in the workplace… Continue reading Did you know…States conduct name-based criminal background checks?
Eric Holder, former U.S. Attorney General under President Obama, wrote three letters in June 2016 to local and state officials urging them not to require fingerprint-based background checks for purposes unrelated to law enforcement. These letters were reported in The Hill. “When I served as U.S. Attorney General, I asked Attorneys General in every state… Continue reading Eric Holder Picks Name-Based Checks Over Fingerprint Checks
An important lesson was re-learned in a recent settlement between plaintiffs alleging discrimination over criminal background checks and the U.S. Census Bureau: FBI fingerprint checks are slow, incomplete, and unreliable.