Are DBS Checks The Same As CRB Checks?
Criminal background checks have been around for approximately 20 years now in the UK, since 2002, in fact.
Since that time, there has been a major change in what they are called and how they are processed. Initially, the criminal record checks were called CRB checks, but they are now called DBS checks.
This brief article will outline when they changed and what changes were made.
CRB to DBS
The original Home Office department that dealt with criminal background checks was the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB). The CRB, working alongside the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA), carried out CRB checks which involved a complete check of a person’s criminal background, revealing details of any offences and convictions.
In 2012, the Home Office decided to merge the CRB and ISA to form a new department called the Disclosure and Barring Service.
Why Did DBS Replace CRB And ISA?
There were two main reasons for the change:
- To streamline the process by using just one organisation to carry out the checks.
- To overhaul the system to make it more fit for purpose.
In general, DBS checks are superior to CRB checks as there are three different levels which can be applied to varying job roles and circumstances.
Since criminal background checks changed to the DBS check, it has become more popular for employers to request a criminal background check. It is not just safeguarding jobs that involve working with children and vulnerable adults that ask for a DBS check, financial jobs and other responsible roles request them too.
Since streamlining the process by switching from CRB checks to DBS checks, the timescale for processing and receiving the result has been reduced. Nowadays, most DBS checks are turned around within four weeks, with the vast majority returned within two weeks.
This is a win-win situation for both employers and employees as the employer can fill their vacancy more quickly and the employee can start earning more quickly.
Also, there is less chance of lost information and miscommunication when there is only one department dealing with the background check application, rather than two, which makes the whole thing more efficient.
The Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) merged with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) back in 2012. The result was the formation of the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
DBS Checks were designed to be quicker and more flexible than CRB checks, with different levels available for different roles.
Find Out More About DBS Checks
If you want to discover more about DBS checks, such as what job roles require them and how to apply for one online, then check out our other blog posts or get in touch with one of our helpful agents.