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Fingerprint Privacy Policy

United States Fingerprint Privacy Policy

Last update: June 13, 2022


Definition of Fingerprints

In this policy, “fingerprints” means images of your fingerprints or your fingerprint geometry, which may be stored on paper or in digital form.

Purpose for Collection and Storage of Fingerprints

Your fingerprints will be collected and stored by Sterling Infosystems Inc., its subsidiary STS SID LLC d/b/a Sterling Identity (collectively, “Sterling”) and their cloud and other technology service providers, for the purposes of providing background or identity services, including, without limitation, obtaining criminal history reports from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) or state authorities (collectively, “services”), as requested by you, an employer, or a licensing body that is permitted by federal, state or local law to receive your FBI or state criminal history report for employment or licensing purposes (collectively, the “end user”).

Disclosure of Fingerprints

Your fingerprints will be disclosed to federal and state authorities as required to complete the services. They may also be disclosed to the end user. Fingerprints are only disclosed as necessary to fulfill the services and comply with applicable laws, regulations, and contractual agreements with federal or state authorities or the end user. Fingerprints are never sold, leased, or traded, and Sterling does not profit from fingerprints other than to accept payment for services from you or the end user.

Information Security

Sterling will safeguard your electronic fingerprints by adhering to the FBI Criminal Justice Information Service (CJIS) Security Policy, which can be found here: Sterling will safeguard your ink fingerprints by handling them exclusively in secure facilities, storing them in locked containers, allowing only trusted and screened workers to access them, and only sending them through protected shipping methods.  These methods of securing your information represent the reasonable standard of care within Sterling’s industry and is the same as or more protective that the way Sterling protects other confidential and sensitive information.

Retention and Destruction

In the case of electronic fingerprints for FBI fingerprinting, Sterling will retain your fingerprints for 30 days or until successful confirmation of FBI report dissemination, whichever comes first, after which they will be securely destroyed by being de-indexed and overwritten in our database. In the case of ink fingerprints for state fingerprinting, Sterling will retain your fingerprint card only as long as it takes to forward it to state authorities, which is generally no more than five business days, after which Sterling will not retain a copy.

Written Release

By providing your fingerprints, you are granting a written release to Sterling to collect and store your fingerprints and disclose your fingerprints to the FBI, state authorities, and the end user (if permitted by law) for these purposes. For more information about your privacy, please review Sterling’s privacy statement found at