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Criminal Background Checks in Online Dating

Techstination feature for Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Criminal background checks in online dating. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. The founder of the online dating service is battling other services and some big names in technology in seeking to force the online dating industry to do background checks of customers. CEO Herb Vest says the background checks done by has company…eliminate a fair number of customers…

"Right now the Internet and Internet dating sites have a number of criminals, married people also on the site. So we began to screen, doing background searches, to determine a person may have had a felony conviction and also whether or not they may be married. And we have found that about 5 percent of our applicants have had felony convictions, so we reject them."

Vest, who started at the beginning of last year after selling a financial planning business to Wells Fargo, acknowledges that some undesirables may slip through…

"It is not a 100 percent fool proof system by any means, so we publish on our site, the limitations of a background search."

Still, he believes the checks are worthwhile, and he has been pushing lawmakers in a variety of states, including Texas and Florida to require them. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.