What are Background Search Engines and how to use them?

In today’s world, information is readily available online, and personal information is no different. So, if you are going on a date, buying expensive equipment from an individual, then you may want to learn about their background through online resources before you make any decision. For instance, you can search the person on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, reverse search their profile image on Google, or apply other such techniques. However, if you want tangible and official information, then you can check out public records that include the following:

  • Certificates like birth certificate, divorce certificate, marriage certificate, etc.
  • Professional and business licenses
  • Documents confirming residential and office addresses
  • Criminal records including sex offender registrations, convictions, etc.

The problem with these records is that many of them are not readily available online but rather in physical form. You can apply for them by visiting a court but that’s just an impractical way of getting the job done. A more convenient and recommended option is to use a background search engine.

What’s a Background Search Engine?

Just like there are mp3 search engines for finding mp3 files of popular songs, and eBook search engines for popular eBooks, a background search engine is an online search tool that can fetch different kinds of records of a particular individual. These include federal criminal records, employment history, address history, social security number, national alias list, etc.

Background search engines make it easier for you to find different kinds of reports at a single location. So, rather than visiting the government websites one by one or approaching the local government departments for different records, you can just use a single decent online service and apply for all the records you want with a few clicks. The facility comes at a price, but you get to dodge all the legwork involved and save a ton of time too.

How to Use a Background Search Engine?

Most background search engines are pretty easy to use. You just need to provide the name, city, and state of the person you are interested in the search engine, and let it do its thing. Of course, you also have to pay the fee for the service in advance.

How to Pick the Best Background Search Service?

The following are some of the main things you need to consider when comparing your options in background search engines:

Types of Records Offered

Different search engines may offer different kinds of checks of the individuals. For instance, some may only provide criminal records as they are some of the most sought-after records on these platforms. However, some may also offer additional details like education background, employment history, etc.

There are some websites that offer their services under different packages. However, it’s better if there is an option for creating a customized package as it can allow you to pay for only those records that you seek.

Legal Compliance

If you don’t want to risk legal action by the government, then you should ensure that the website that you get your information from is in compliance with the FCRA regulations. You can read the terms and conditions of the websites to know which ones can be trusted and which can’t.


Background check services can be expensive. So, it’s a good idea to check the prices offered by different providers, although these can also vary a lot depending on how much detail you want in a report. Naturally, your decision should depend on how much information you seek and how much you are willing to pay.

Turnaround Time

More often than not, you will need access to someone’s records within a week if not days. If you don’t want to wait for a long time before the records are provided to you, then make sure that you check the turnaround time of different background check search engines.


There is no point in getting the public records of a person at dirt cheap rates when the details provided are limited and/or inaccurate. So, make it a point to verify the authenticity and accuracy of the website that you are interested in. You can do some online research about the best public records search engine that exists on the Internet and read online reviews and ratings to find the best option.

Customer Service

Most of the background search engines are pretty easy to use. However, you can still run into problems related to fetching the details you seek, payment, or using a particular feature that the website is providing. In such an event, you want reliable and easily accessible customer support. You can learn about it in advance by checking the FAQ section or the “customer support” section of the website.

Bottom Line

Background searches can help you in many ways. They can prevent you from beginning a relationship with someone who has a criminal record that they have kept from you or verifying a potential buyer or seller who you’re about to buy a second-hand item from via Craigslist, etc. As you can see, there are all kinds of risks involved when you decide to trust a stranger. Background services can help you in reducing this risk and make you more informed about better decisions.

About the author

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James Oliver

James Oliver, a freelance article writer and contributor who focus more on technology, mainly Gadgets and all the latest trends which are interesting for readers and tech enthusiasts.