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Everything you need to know about BPSS

Updated: Dec 28, 2023

The Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS) is the standard pre-employment screening for government employees. BPSS checks were developed to help limit the risk of illegal employment and identity fraud, as well as to defend national security.

BPSS is a standard level of screening in the civil servants, armed forces and government contractors sectors. This type of check confirms the identity of individuals when working with potentially sensitive information.

Why would you conduct a BPSS check?

· To ensure that all new, directly recruited staff are entitled to undertake the employment in question and, where appropriate, meet Right To Work rules for government services.

· Guard against the employment of anyone posing as a prospective employee for commercial of personal gain.

The most important asset in any organisation is its people. The BPSS is describe as the mandatory pre-employment screening required to address the problem to identify fraud, illegal working and deception. As well as posing serious risk to company reputation and financial assets they may also be indicators of more serious national security concerns. Failure to address these issues could lead to reputational or more serious damage to the business or government.

The government regards BPSS checks as an important precaution to validate an individual's (employee or contractor) identity and right to work in the UK. These types of checks are frequently necessary for obtaining government contracts/government related jobs, since they provide assurance as to that individuals' credibility, integrity, and values essential for the position. The risks connected with employees dealing with potentially sensitive information are migrated by BPSS checks.

What information is included in the BPSS check?

A BPSS check consist of verification made up of the following 4 parts (RICE):

· Right to work – Nationally and Immigration status (including an entitlement to undertake the work in question)

· Identity – ID Data Check (electronic identity authentication – Name, address, aliases, links, accounts, etc)

· Criminal Records – search for unspent convictions only (Basic Disclosure, DBS)

· Employment history check – confirmation of the past 3 years employment (minimum) history/ activity

In addition, candidates are required to disclose any significant period spent abroad (6 months or more in the past 3 years)

How can VettingGateway Help?

These checks can be performed inside the VettingGateways referencing portal, which includes integration for the UK Basic DBS and identity verification. VettingGateway will also save you time by automatically emailing all of your referees every three days, allowing you to cross another task off your to-do list!

Click here for more information on how VettingGateway can assist you, or sign up for your free beginning licence and three free reference checks by clicking here.


The information Provided by VettingGateway in this blog was published on the 30/06/2022, all information was relevant at the time of publishing however as our landscape is forever changing this information may not remain valid.

*Average 21 day turnaround for aviation background checks correct as of 30/06/2022

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