Database Searches Part 2

Database Searches:  The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Part 2

Ensuring you are paying for an investigation, not a search

The Good: Nowhere else will you find this much information compiled on one person, in the world.  These database searches make a point of being as comprehensive as possible so that they can be your “one-stop shop”.  We have found that the various database searches have their own strengths and weaknesses which is why we utilize several of these platforms in conjunction to make sure we have the best starting data to begin our investigations.

investigative database searchesDepending on the investigation we are conducting, will determine the database searches we use and what information we search for.  In asset searches, we are worried about gathering a comprehensive residential history for a subject in order to search local records to determine if they own any real property, or if they recently sold or transferred their holdings.  In a locate investigation we like to know what address the person is most recently associated with, where their vehicles are registered, and where their driver’s license is registered.

Databases:  The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Bad: It is important to understand that, in many platforms, the database search results will change based on the search terms.  If you simply run a Social Security Number, the results will only provide items that are matched to that SSN.  If there are public records, like criminal records, tied to just a person’s name and date of birth, these will not be present in a report run by SSN alone.

We have also had records incorrectly associated to our subjects.  If an investigator had not performed the search and followed the necessary steps to verify the information, the client could be misled in the process.  Some information has nothing but a name associated with it, and if two subjects’ share the same name and have resided in the same, large apartment building this information could be associated with both people, but only really belong to one of them.

Databases:  The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Ugly: Depending on who is running the database searches, the platform used, and the search terms used the report will vary wildly.  When your search is complete, you are provided a report that can be anywhere from 50 to 500 pages long.  Some companies will simply put their cover page on top of this data report and sell it as a “background check” or an “asset search” and mark up the price 500-1,000%.  Do not let this exchange of data pass as an actual investigation.  It will leave you with more questions than answers and ultimately have you running back to the investigator asking for more work, that should have been done in the first place.




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