Online dating opened the door to a whole new world for people hoping to meet Mr. or Miss Right. But now some in the popular industry are realizing they need to more carefully scrutinize who they let in that door. Online dating service Match.com recently announced it would begin conducting background checks on its members by cross-checking users against a national sex offender registry. The decision came in response to an alleged sexual assault that occurred by a Match.com member on a date set up by the dating service. A lawsuit has been filed against them in the case.
The move is a simple step but a significant one, and is most likely a harbinger of other changes to come. While more employers in businesses across all industries have been recognizing the need for thorough a background check on employees, all those in the business of people — child care, elder care, health care, dating services, churches, support groups and the like — should heed the call to conduct a comprehensive criminal background screening to make sure they don’t have a criminal record.
Such screening can provide protection against online predators with previous criminal convictions, including assaults, domestic violence, burglary, fraud, identity theft, drug offenses and many other crimes that could endanger the welfare of other employees, members or patrons.
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