Background Screening Glossary

The background screening industry, like any industry, comes with its own vernacular.

Check out these commonly used words, phrases, and acronyms to see how many you know, and bookmark this background screening glossary for future use.

AAMVAAmerican Association Of Motor Vehicle Administrators
ACVAAMVAnet Code Dictionary
AFISAutomated Fingerprint Identification System
AICPAAmerican Institute of Certified Public Accountants
AliasFalse name used in substitution of a legal name on official documents and for official purposes. May also be noted as AKA (as known as) records. 
AOAdministrative Office of The United States Courts
AOCAdministrative Office of The Court
APIApplication Program Interface
ArbitrationThe hearing and settlement of a dispute between opposing parties by a third party whose decision the parties have agreed to accept. 
Arrest WarrantA written order of the court which is made on behalf of the state, or United States, and is based upon a complaint issued pursuant to statute and/or court rule and which commands a law enforcement officer to arrest a person. 
AssaultIntentional or threatened infliction of injury to another. Aggregated classification is assignment when the injury is considered serious or when injury is threatened or carried out with the use of a deadly / dangerous weapon. Simple classification is assigned when the injury inflicted or threatened is not serious and a weapon is not used. 
ATF Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives
Bankruptcy Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings. 
BOP (Federal) Bureau of Prisons
BSAAPBackground Screening Agency Accreditation Program  
CDLIS Commercial Driver’s License Information System
CFPBConsumer Financial Protection Bureau 
Civil CaseA case between private litigants concerning personal wrongs, generally where the losing party must compensate the prevailing party with money or other property. 
Concurrent SentenceUpon conviction for multiple crimes, a criminal sentence is served at the same time as another criminal sentence, rather than one after the other. 
Consecutive SentenceUpon conviction for multiple crimes, criminal sentences must be served one after the other, rather than at the same time.
ConvictionThe result of a criminal proceeding in which it is the judgment of the judge or jury that the accused is guilty of an offense. Often used to differentiate between one convicted of an offense or where one enters a plea of guilty on an offense charged. 
CPACertified Public Accountant 
CPACost Per Acquisition
CRAConsumer Reporting Agency
Criminal CaseA charge filed by a prosecutor against a defendant concerning violation of criminal law. The act of violating a criminal law is an offense against the community, not a private wrong
CSATCustomer Satisfaction
DCADirectConnect API
DEADrug Enforcement Administration   
DismissTermination of a case. The court may enter an order dismissing a case because the prosecuting attorney for the state may dismiss the matter for reasons such as lack of evidence, death of a witness, or because the matter is to be re-filed due to the original indictment being defective, etc. 
DispositionThe act or the power of settling a matter finally; to bring something to its conclusion.
DMFDeath Master File
DOBDate of Birth
DOCDepartment of Corrections
DOT Department of Transportation
DPPADriver’s Privacy Protection Act – A federal law that regulates how information from DMV records can be released and shared. The DPPA regulates how motor vehicle departments release driver records and vehicle records. The DPPA also regulates how a recipient of DMV records can share information with another party.
EEOEqual Employment Opportunity Act – Legislation which requires United States employers to provide equal employment opportunity to all persons regardless of ethnicity, gender or age.
ExpungeProcess by which the record of a criminal case is destroyed or sealed after expiration of time.
FCRAFair Credit Reporting Act – The FCRA is a federal law designed to protect individuals, by promoting accuracy, fairness, and privacy of information in the files of every Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA).
Felony A serious criminal offense for which the minimum sentence is one year.
FineA monetary penalty, which may include forfeiture or penalty recoverable in a civil action, and in criminal convictions, maybe in addition to imprisonment.
FINRAFinancial Industry Regulatory Authority 
FRSFlexible Research System
FTAFree Trade Agreement
HRBPHuman Resources Business Partner
JSONJavaScript Object Notation
JWTJASON Web Token
LOBLine of Business
LOELevel of Effort
LWLast Week
MSAMetropolitan Statistical Areas
MVRMotor Vehicle Record
NAFTANorth American Free Trade Agreement
NAPBSNational Association of Professional Background Screeners
NCSCNational Center for State Courts
NICSNational Instant Background Check System
NODSNational Open Court Data Standards
NSORNational Sex Offender Registry
OFAC Office of Foreign Assets Control 
OIGOffice of Inspector General
OKR Objective & Key Results
OLAOperating Level Agreement
PBSA Professional Background Screening Association
PII Personal Identifying Information 
POC Proof of Concept
QAQuality Assurance
SLAService Level Agreement 
SOCSystem and Organization Controls 
SORSex Offender Registry 
SOWStatement of Work
SQLSales Qualified Lead
SSASocial Security Administration
SSDISocial Security Death Index
SSNSocial Security Number 
T&M Time & Materials
TAM Total Addressable Market 
TATTurnaround Time
THDTrade House Data
WSDLWeb Services Description Language
YOBYear of Birth 

Have more terms you’d like to see added to the background screening glossary? Let us know!

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