Do-it yourself background checks


It seems all of us know someone who met a significant other online. But the dating scene is full of people pretending to be someone they’re not.

WSBT 22’s Diane Daniels shows us how you can clear up some of the mystery with a background check.

Man or woman – when we’re curious about someone, most of us make a beeline to social media.

That’s a good start. But whether you’re looking for love, hiring someone to take care of a child, or aging parent you must dig deeper.

Linda Montgomery does background checks for a living. She runs her own private investigation firm.

Montgomery and her team check social media all the time.

Their advice? Use websites like Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, to verify things a person you don’t know has told you about themselves.

“Their approximate age, towns they’ve lived in. Any activities they’ve been involved in,” she said. “Where’d they go to school? What places have they worked? What about special interests?”

All information you can easily obtain in the course of conversation in person or online.

“You need to first determine whether this person is being honest and truthful and open about themselves,” Montgomery suggests.

The most convenient way to do get down to the nitty gritty is an online background check service.

The cost? From as little as $12 to as much as $50 for a single report.

But buyer beware, some sites don’t mention the cost upfront. Some sites take a long time to process the report. And remember, you can’t see it, until you pay.

Another website, Peoplewise, also provides social media profiles for $25.

“Get to know as much as you can about them, before you become too involved,” said Montgomery.

Consider it an important investment in yourself. The person you’re checking out could ultimately affect every major part of your life.

In many states, you can also request background information from the state police. Depending on the location, you can find criminal convictions, recent arrests, and check registries listing sex or kidnap offenses.

Keep in mind that if you use a background search service to hire someone – legally, you must always get the other person’s permission in writing.


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