We have experienced some interesting new legal changes in the South African background screening industry and thought it important to share some information with you regarding this and we are also very pleased that we are legally compliant in all ways.
Police Clearance Certificates for South Africa:
There have recently been some changes with regards to obtaining Police Clearance certificate. These changes have been implemented to assist with curbing ID Fraud.
In South Africa potential employers will often do a criminal background check on a candidate for a permanent, contract or volunteer position. It is the most common background check done in South Africa despite the South African Police Service’s (SAPS) records not always being up to date and that the check does not provide information unless the candidate has been convicted of a crime in South Africa.
Criminal checks are often used by potential employers to understand the candidate’s history, character and job fit OR to manage risk in an organization.
A criminal record check is not a police clearance certificate and is not accepted by embassies / consulates for visa applications or immigration purposes and the regulations around this police clearance certificate have recently changed.
South African National Credit Act Information:
iFacts and all employee screening companies in South Africa need to register with the NCR and are required to comply with the regulations as set out in the National Credit Act Amendment 19 of 2014 (NCAA). This came into effect in March 2015.
In line with this Amendment, a consumer credit record may only be accessed by a recruitment company, staffing company or employer when:
• They certify that the request for consumer credit information relates to a position requiring honesty in the handling of cash and finances
• There is a job description in place that outlines the requirement of trust and honesty in the handling of cash and finances; and
• Specific and informed consent/indemnity of the consumer is obtained prior to the request being made.
Whilst this is a European legislation it does effect global employee screening companies. GDPR is a regulation that requires businesses to protect the personal data and privacy of EU citizens for transactions that occur within EU member states.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation in European Union (EU) law on data protection and privacy for all individuals within the European Union. It also addresses the export of personal data outside the EU. The GDPR is a legal framework that sets guidelines for the collection and processing of personal information of individuals within the European Union (EU).
The fines and penalties for a less serious level infringement will be up to €10 million, or 2% of the worldwide annual revenue of the prior financial year, whichever is higher.
The fines and penalties for a more serious level infringement Up to €20 million, or 4% of the worldwide annual revenue of the prior financial year, whichever is higher.
This regulation came into effect on the 25th of May 2018.