What Background Checks Do Banks Do?

What Background Checks Do Banks Do?

In the banking industry, where trust and integrity are paramount, the question “What background checks do banks do?” is especially pertinent. Banks need to ensure that their employees can be trusted with sensitive information, money, and other financial assets. This requires a background screening provider that is not only comprehensive, fast, and affordable but also compliant with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) and both local and state laws. The emphasis for banks is on identifying any history of theft, fraud, or financial irresponsibility that could pose a risk to the institution and its customers.

The Importance of Background Checks in Banks

Background checks in the banking sector are critical for several reasons:

  • Preventing Fraud: Ensuring that potential employees have no history of engaging in theft, fraud, or any dishonest activities.
  • Financial Responsibility: Assessing a candidate’s financial history to identify any patterns of financial instability or irresponsibility that might indicate a risk.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Banks are subject to numerous regulations that require thorough vetting of employees to prevent money laundering and other financial crimes.
  • Protecting Reputation: Maintaining customer trust is essential in banking, and hiring individuals with impeccable records helps protect the bank’s reputation.

How Background Checks Work for Banks

The process typically involves the following key steps:

  1. Consent: Obtaining consent from the candidate, in line with FCRA requirements.
  2. Collection of Information: Gathering essential information, including the candidate’s name, date of birth, and Social Security number.
  3. Comprehensive Research: Accessing public and private records to compile data on criminal history, credit reports, employment history, and educational background.
  4. Verification: Directly verifying information, particularly regarding past employment and education.
  5. Compilation of Report: Preparing a detailed report that outlines the findings, highlighting any areas of concern.

Common Components of a Bank Background Check

  • Social Security Trace: Confirms the candidate’s identity and address history.
  • Criminal Records Check: Searches for any criminal history related to theft, fraud, and other financial crimes at local, state, and national levels.
  • Credit History Check: Reviews the candidate’s credit report to assess financial responsibility and potential overextension, which could indicate a risk in handling sensitive information and money.
  • Employment Verification: Confirms the candidate’s previous employment, focusing on roles, responsibilities, and tenure, especially in positions of trust.
  • Education Verification: Validates degrees and certifications that are relevant to the banking position.

Tailoring Background Screening for Banking Positions

Banks must develop their background screening programs with an emphasis on the specific risks associated with the positions being filled. Given the sensitivity of banking roles, a one-size-fits-all approach to background checks is not sufficient. Instead, banks often require more stringent checks compared to other sectors, especially for positions involving direct access to financial assets or personal customer information.

How Far Back Does a Bank Background Check Go?

The lookback period for a background check in banking can vary but typically includes a thorough review of records going back 7 to 10 years. Some jurisdictions may have specific rules regarding how far back employers can search.

What Typically Shows Up in the Results

The results of a bank background check can reveal a range of information critical to the hiring decision, including any criminal records related to financial crimes, a detailed credit history report indicating financial stability or lack thereof, and verification of employment and educational credentials.


Understanding “What background checks do banks do?” is crucial for institutions in the financial sector committed to maintaining the highest standards of integrity and trust. For banks seeking a reliable background screening provider, EDIFY Background Screening offers the specialized services necessary to conduct thorough and efficient background investigations.

We encourage banks and financial institutions to consider EDIFY Background Screening as their partner in ensuring a secure and trustworthy hiring process. With our commitment to accuracy, compliance, and prompt service, we ensure that your background screening needs are met with the utmost professionalism. Contact us at 336-283-0237 or visit www.edifyscreening.com to learn more about how we can assist in conducting comprehensive and compliant background checks tailored to the banking industry’s unique needs.

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