Online Database to Name and Shame Dishonest Workers

Employees accused of theft or acting dishonestly run the risk of being named and shamed on an online database due to be launched by Action Against Business Crime (AABC) later this month, writes Farah Jifri.

AABC, a joint venture between the Home Office and the British Retail Consortium aimed at tackling business crime, says the National Staff Dismissal Register will allow employers to check if potential recruits have been accused of dishonesty.

“The current system of employment references is too easily circumvented by dishonest applicants and can result in previously dismissed staff being employed again by another employer without knowledge of any past conduct,” said AABC chief executive Mike Schuck. “With the increasing sophistication of internal dishonesty, we need to ensure businesses have the most effective tools at their disposal to help reduce losses.”

Employers will have to pay a membership fee to receive an encrypted password allowing them to access the database. They will then be able to view a list of workers accused of or dismissed for theft, damage to company property, forgery or fraud.

Businesses that are subscribed to the database will be able to share information about employees with other firms, and search the register when screening job applications. Records will be kept for five years and can include photos.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) warned the register could leave innocent staff vulnerable, since it will list those who have been accused, not convicted.

“We are concerned that it could impact relationships between employees and owner-managers of small firms,” said FSB spokesman Simon Briault.

“However, the take-up of this service among SMEs is likely to be small, as the AABC initiative is aimed at larger companies,” he added.

Online Database to Name and Shame Dishonest Workers

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