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Proving Your Identity at the Post Office

Apply for a DBS Check

Proving that you are who you say you are might not be as straightforward as it first appears, especially if you have been asked to prove your identity in connection with a job application. Many companies are taking increasing care over who they are hiring. This might be something as simple as verifying academic qualifications or taking up references or may involve higher levels of checking by running credit checks or asking people to undergo a DBS check, previously known as a CRB check. There are different levels of DBS check, and the level you need will be determined by the work you are being hired to do.

Whatever the level of your DBS check, a key part of the process is establishing your identity so that your employer knows that they are dealing with the correct person. There is a range of ways for doing this, and for many people the easiest option is going along to their local Post Office to make use of their identity checking service.


Basic DBS Checks

You can apply for a basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check online by visiting the GOV.UK site. As part of this process, you are asked to log into an online portal for verifying your identity. This is done by taking key data from trusted documents such as your passport and using biometrics to compare with an image you have uploaded from your phone or captured using a webcam on a laptop. If you're unable to validate your identity online, then you have the option of verifying it in person at a Post Office branch. Just select the option to “prove your identity in person” when completing the online DBS application form.


Standard or Enhanced DBS Checks

Standard and Enhanced DBS checks are required for certain jobs where a higher level of investigation into someone’s background is necessary, such as positions involving work with children, vulnerable adults, or sensitive roles like accountants and legal assistants.


Visiting the Post Office

If you have chosen to verify your identity in person at the Post Office, then the first job is to look for the nearest Post Office which is participating in the scheme. Most are able to help you verify your identity, but some of the smaller ones may not be able to help. Take along your verification letter, the application form, and the original documents which you have been asked to provide. The Post Office worker behind the counter will look at your documents and process them to confirm that you are who you say you are.

Then, a report is sent back to whichever organisation has requested the identity check from the Post Office, stating which documents have been checked, and confirming your identity. This will then let you go ahead and apply for a new position requiring an identity check, or any one of the many other scenarios in which you might be asked to verify official paperwork.