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The National Safeguarding Conference 2013



Disclosure & Barring Service

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) is a Non-Department Public Body (NDPB) established under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. The DBS helps employers make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, including children.

We are responsible for:

  • processing requests for criminal records checks
  • deciding whether it is appropriate for a person to be placed on or removed from a barred list
  • placing or removing people from the DBS children’s barred list and adults’ barred list for England, Wales and Northern Ireland

We work with the police, who provide information that is held locally or on the police national computer. When disclosing information held locally, the police follow the quality assurance framework developed by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and the DBS.

We also work with:

Department for Education - owns the safeguarding policy for children

Department of Health - owns the safeguarding policy for vulnerable groups

Capita - private sector partner that operates an administration infrastructure and call centre for our disclosure service

Registered bodies - organisations that have registered with the DBS checking service and are the primary points of contact for:

  • checking disclosure applications and validating information provided by the applicant
  • establishing the identity of the applicant
  • submitting fully completed application forms
  • countersigning application forms to confirm entitlement

Recently the DBS launched an exciting new Update Service which puts individuals in greater control of their information; allowing them to reuse their DBS certificates when applying for similar jobs. This will reduce bureaucracy for individuals and employers and save time and money.

More information about the Update Service is available on our website www.gov.uk/dbs 

Contact details:

For disclosure issues and information, please phone: 0870 90 90 811

For barring issues and information, please phone: 01325 953 795

Email: customerservices@dbs.gsi.gov.uk