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  • Federal requirement for background checks?

    Can anyone answer this?:

    Anyone have a cite for a federal law that requires private security guard companies to do criminal background checks on their personnel?
    Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
    Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

    Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

  • #2
    I know of no law that requires it, only that authorizes companies to request a background check from NCIC/FBI even if a state law does not require FBI/NCIC background checking for a position as a private security guard.

    Various GSA requirements would mandate federal background checks, but only for positions as federal contractors.
    Some Kind of Commando Leader

    "Every time I see another crazy Florida post, I'm glad I don't work there." ~ Minneapolis Security on Florida Security Law

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    • #3
      N.A types faster than me. What he said.

      http://a257.g.akamaitech.net/7/257/2...006/06-223.htm

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      • #4
        Thanks for the responses. I didn't think so, but thought I would go to the people who would know.
        Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
        Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

        Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

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        • #5
          Manitoba Requirement

          I just read in Security Director News (March 2007 - page 2) where Manitoba is the first province in Canada to require minimum training and licensure of all security guards. Of interesting note, this also provides "any organization that employs in-house security personnel and private investigation teams must be registered and have appropriate liability coverage.

          http://www.securitydirectornews.com/...depts&deptid=2
          Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
          Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

          Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

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          • #6
            There are many kinds of law, including any regulations published by executive agencies like the IRS, DOD, DOL, EEOC, etc. that have the force of law. These regs aren't "laws" in the narrow sense of statutory law passed by Congress. When these agencies were created, Congress authorized them to create and enforce regulations as necessary to carry out their mission, which is what gives these regulations the force of law. Most of what many people call "Federal tax law", for instance, are actually regulations created by the IRS.

            The closest thing to what you're asking about would be that some agencies like the DOD, DOE, TSA, etc. have strict regulations requiring background checks, even up to and including top secret level clearances, both for personnel working directly as civilian employees of the agency and for employees of companies that contract with them. Any of these requirements might be considered by someone to be "Federal laws", although strictly speaking they're Federal agency regulations.

            So, someone might say that Boeing, in order to comply with DOD regulations for contractors, is "required by Federal law" to conduct certain specific background checks, all the way up to top secret in scope. It comes down to the same thing as far as Boeing is concerned...and Boeing would be required to certify that a security subcontractor meets the same regs.
            Last edited by SecTrainer; 03-10-2007, 11:33 AM.
            "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

            "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

            "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

            "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

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            • #7
              Originally posted by SecTrainer
              Depending on what you mean by "law" (because this can include regulations published by executive agencies like the IRS, DOD, DOL etc. that have the force of law), the closest thing to that would be that some agencies like the DOD have regulations requiring such background checks, up to and including secret level clearances, for companies that contract with them. There are, of course, strict requirements for security personnel working at nuclear facilities, etc.

              A layman knowing about such regulations might think these were "federal laws requiring FBI background checks" and refer to them that way, although they aren't laws passed by Congress. Congress, however, authorizes the agencies in question to create and enforce regulations as necessary to do their jobs, which is what gives these regulations the force of law.
              SecTrainer-Security Consultant:
              The only fly in the ointment is some agencies require Limited National Agency Checks (LNAC) instead of a NAC with written inquiries. Thank God fingerprints are taken in both instances although I knew of cases where none were forwarded with the LNAC. AFIS has been a blessing for all concerned.
              Local agency checks are for the most part, useless.
              An expanded background investigation (EBI) is the as good as they come, save but for "Q" or Yankee White. Sometimes people confuse security clearances with access. Just because you have have a secret clearance doesn't mean all secret information, access authorization is provided to only have "need to know." CNWDI is another access that throws people off, it doesn't mean everything in that program.
              Enjoy the day,
              Bill

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Bill Warnock
                SecTrainer-Security Consultant:
                Just because you have have a secret clearance doesn't mean all secret information, access authorization is provided to only have "need to know." CNWDI is another access that throws people off, it doesn't mean everything in that program.
                Enjoy the day,
                Bill
                We're getting a bit off topic here, but you're right - a particular security clearance level is just one element in actually granting access to any specific asset, whether a physical asset, information asset, etc. Broadly speaking, there is a matrix of other considerations we think of collectively as "need to know", but of course it's even more complicated than that.

                Even the ajudication process for clearances can be mind-boggling in its complexity. Just because a particular item of adverse information, such as an unfavorable financial matter, or even a past history of certain kinds of drug use, turns up in a background investigation does not mean the clearance will automatically be denied. It depends on what it is, how long ago, what the applicant did about it, and how it is viewed in light of the rest of the information developed, etc. I have the administrative regs for DOD clearance ajudications somewhere on one of these miles of shelves in my office. It's hundreds of pages long, covering each element of the investigation and how to treat adverse information in each. Interesting reading, though.
                Last edited by SecTrainer; 03-10-2007, 11:31 AM.
                "Every betrayal begins with trust." - Brian Jacques

                "I can't predict the future, but I know that it'll be very weird." - Anonymous

                "There is nothing new under the sun." - Ecclesiastes 1:9

                "History, with all its volumes vast, hath but one page." - Lord Byron

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Security Consultant
                  Of interesting note, this also provides "any organization that employs in-house security personnel and private investigation teams must be registered and have appropriate liability coverage.

                  http://www.securitydirectornews.com/...depts&deptid=2
                  Quebec passed a similar law last fall. It will be enacted slowly. Part of the requirements will be that people like me, working in-house for an hotel, will have to be licensed. Ontario also passed a law last year & I think it covers in-house too.
                  I enforce rules and regulations, not laws.
                  Security Officers. The 1st First Responders.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by HotelSecurity
                    Quebec passed a similar law last fall. It will be enacted slowly. Part of the requirements will be that people like me, working in-house for an hotel, will have to be licensed. Ontario also passed a law last year & I think it covers in-house too.
                    If I take the article at face value, it sounds like retailers who have in-house loss prevention/security investigators will need to comply with the law. Having worked loss prevention in Quebec and Ontario for many years I wonder if this will affect retailers, based in the US.

                    I don't believe it will affect me, regarding my Canadian business, as I'm an independent contractor.
                    Retail Security Consultant / Expert Witness
                    Co-Author - Effective Security Management 6th Edition

                    Contributor to Retail Crime, Security and Loss Prevention: An Encyclopedic Reference

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                    • #11
                      Anyone have a cite for a federal law that requires private security guard companies to do criminal background checks on their personnel?
                      If the keyword is "federal" law, then no. This is verified by the US Dept. of Labor:
                      Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

                      Most States require that guards be licensed. To be licensed as a guard, individuals must usually be at least 18 years old, pass a background check, and complete classroom training in such subjects as property rights, emergency procedures, and detention of suspected criminals. Drug testing often is required and may be random and ongoing.

                      Many employers of unarmed guards do not have any specific educational requirements. For armed guards, employers usually prefer individuals who are high school graduates or who hold an equivalent certification. Many jobs require a driver’s license. For positions as armed guards, employers often seek people who have had responsible experience in other occupations.

                      Guards who carry weapons must be licensed by the appropriate government authority, and some receive further certification as special police officers, allowing them to make limited types of arrests while on duty. Armed guard positions have more stringent background checks and entry requirements than those of unarmed guards because of greater insurance liability risks. Compared with unarmed security guards, armed guards and special police typically enjoy higher earnings and benefits, greater job security, and more potential for advancement. Usually, they also are given more training and responsibility.

                      Rigorous hiring and screening programs consisting of background, criminal record, and fingerprint checks are becoming the norm in the occupation. Applicants are expected to have good character references, no serious police record, and good health. They should be mentally alert, emotionally stable, and physically fit to cope with emergencies. Guards who have frequent contact with the public should communicate well.
                      You will note that opening statement is "most states require...". The US Dept. of Labor makes no mention of Federal requirements for a background check on security guards. If he buys his own gun, or backup gun, then Federal law will require a NICS instant results background check. Almost every state will require a state sanctioned background check since an absolutely free people search check will not do. Not only the background check, but all of the security guard training requirements are determined at the state level, and not the Federal level.

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