Criminal Record Checks have changed

CRB checks have changed, there now called DBS checks and the roles they cover have been greatly reduced. Information on the changes can be found by clicking here.

As part of the changes a new live update service has been launched. This is what the Disclosure and Barring Service had to say in their latest email:

I am very pleased to tell you that we will introduce our new Update Service on 17 June. This service will dramatically change the way individuals use their criminal record check and how employers check their suitability. For the first time, individuals will be able to apply to have their criminal record check kept up to date and employers will be able to go online to see if the information released is still current and valid. The Update Service will ultimately reduce the number of criminal record checks people need to have, saving everyone time and money.

We know that many of you have been looking forward to its introduction, and I apologise that it comes later than we’d all hoped.

We really wanted to be able to tell you about this much sooner but were not in a position to do so. This was because the Appeal Court judgment on the filtering of old and minor convictions came without notice, and as a legal matter, it had to take priority over all other work. Along with other bodies, we needed to work out how to adapt our criminal record checks to accommodate this judgment, and that affected our plans for the Update Service.


From 17 June 2013, anyone who applies for their next criminal record check can choose to subscribe to our new Update Service for £13 per year*. This will allow them to keep their criminal record certificate up to date, so that they can take it with them from role to role, within the same workforce.


Employers benefit too because they can carry out free, instant online checks of an individual’s certificate (with their consent), to check that it is up to date. When someone is subscribing to this service, you would only have to seek a new criminal record check if the system tells you something has changed.

Registered Bodies

As explained in our April edition of DBS News, we’ll make two important changes to our checks from 17 June also. This affects how you complete the ‘position applied for’ field on the application form for a criminal record check. It also means that we will no longer send Registered Bodies a copy of an individual’s DBS certificate. We appreciate that this may cause you some concern, as you have been used to receiving this information directly from us. The change to our process is part of the Government’s aim to put the individual in greater control of their own data. Individuals will now be able to challenge the information we release, before it is seen by their current or prospective employer.

We’ve written to you separately with more detail, and if you have any queries, please get in touch.

I hope that you will support the Update Service as a big step forward for the criminal records regime, and encourage anyone who will benefit to join it when they next apply for their criminal record check.

Thank you for your support and assistance.

With best wishes

Adriènne Kelbie
Chief Executive

More information about the new Update Service and these two other changes is now available from our website Once you have had a chance to read the guidance there, please do contact us if you have any questions. You can get in touch with our Customer Services team on 0870 90 90 811 or at

You have received this email because the DBS has received a registration of interest from you.

If you have any enquiries, feedback or suggestions please email