Criminal records form an integral part for obtaining security clearances no matter the level of access. In order to ensure public safety some countries and states may request high risk professions to be screened. For instance all hospital staff, volunteers, school staff, healthcare students, healthcare professionals and childcare staff have to undergo a CRC which is a requirement by law.

For example pardon in Canada is delegated by the National Parole Board or the Governor General or by the Federal Government and under the criminal records act will be determined by the crime committed. Other countries such as Hong Kong all criminal records are held by the Police Force. As opposed to other countries the authorities of Hong Kong do not allow employers or schools to access criminal records.

Any offenses committed in Hong Kong can only be pardoned by the Chief Executive of Hong Kong. The Chief Executive exercises the functions and powers to pardon people that have commuted their penalties or were convicted of a criminal offense. Regardless of time or seriousness of the offense criminal records are not purged.

If it was the persons first criminal offense or the jail sentence was less than three months or if the person was issued a fine of less that ten thousand dollars the criminal record is considered spent within a period of three years has passed since the conviction and that no other convictions were committed by the person in question. This law falls under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Ordinance.

However, there is an exception with regards to spent records such as those attempting to register as an accountant, insurance broker, barrister or solicitor. Criminal records will not be regarded as spent when a person has a criminal record and is applying to become a trustee for a Provident Fund or employee, executive or bank controller. Hong Kong has it own jurisdiction and set of laws pertaining to criminal records and people with such records are given protection under this law.

In addition those that plan to travel or immigrate or adopt kids can apply for a certificate of no criminal conviction. Such certification is issued to a government agency or the consulate but no to the person requesting it. So it is not true that one can obtain criminal records freely or online for that matter, even if an employer is running a check on a potential employee.