DBS checks (Disclosure & Barring Service checks) were previously known as CRB checks (see CRB checks). They came into being in December 2012 when the CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) merged with the ISA (Independent Safeguarding Authority) to form the DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service). A DBS check is used by businesses, companies, recruitment agencies and organisations in the public, private and voluntary sectors to make more informed and safer decisions when hiring people to work with children, young people and vulnerable adults. Their aim is to ensure that unsuitable people do not work with such vulnerable groups. There are three type of criminal records check – Standard, Enhanced and Enhanced with Barred List checks.
- A Standard check, generally for positions of high responsibility such as security or finance, would reveal details of any convictions, cautions, reprimands and warnings that the applicant may have received.
- An Enhanced check takes place for positions involving children or vulnerable adults, for example. In addition to the information provided for a Standard check, an Enhanced check would involve an additional check with the Police to check whether any other information is held on file that may be relevant.
- An Enhanced with Barred List check would include everything that an Enhanced check does plus it would check the appropriate DBS Barred List. There are two DBS Barred lists: one for adults and one for children. The list contains information as to whether an applicant is barred from working with either adults or children.