Hamilton Police to launch Online Police Background Checks

Hamilton Police are asking the Police Services Board to approve a plan to conduct police background screening checks online.

Presently, screening checks can only be done during business hours at police headquarters downtown. In 2012, police processed over 27,000 screening checks. All checks are done in-person and police say this is creating a “tremendous backlog of people waiting in our lobby every day.”

The new online checks will use a person’s consumer credit file, held by TransUnion, to confirm identity. “Most, if not all of these details would only be known to the individual themselves,” says the report. “Practically eliminating the risk of identity fraud.”

Online checks will be charged an extra $9.95 ‘convenience fee’ in addition to the current fees of between $15.oo, for volunteer checks, to $50.00 for various employment and legal background checks.

If fingerprints are required, the person will be emailed and have to attend police headquarters to confirm their identity.

Hamilton Police say they are the first police agency in Canada to plan to offer this service. The Chatham-Kent Police Services Board approved the same private sector provide for their online checks at their most recent meeting.

Neither report states when the online checks will be available.