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FoundedMarch 2007; 13 years ago (2007-03)[1]
FounderJosh Levy
Ross Cohen
Key people
Josh Levy, CEO[2]
Ross Cohen, COO[3] Edit this at Wikidata

BeenVerified is a background check company that provides consumer initiated criminal background and people search services through its website for profit as well as its mobile application "Background Check App."[4][5] The company also launched additional mobile applications including a reverse number look up called NumberGuru[6] and a registered sex offender tracking app that uses augmented reality to locate sex offenders.[7][8]


Founded in 2007, Josh Levy and Ross Cohen launched BeenVerified in 2009 and began advertising on national television, as well as on the back of garbage trucks.[1] Initially, the company included a service called StandOut that allowed people to check and verify their own background information to use as a marketing tool online in the form of an embeddable seal as well as see what information employers could potentially find out about them.[9][9]

Levy and Cohen have discussed the company's pivot from originally focusing on the small business market to becoming a consumer-focused background check service in Inc. and CIO Magazine.[10][11]

In 2009, BeenVerified launched an iPhone application called the Background Check App, allowing users to use the service on their iPhones.[12] It was the second background check app for the iOS platform behind the DateCheck app launched by Intelius a year earlier.

In 2010, BeenVerified released a sex offender tracking app for both iOS and Android platforms.[7] The app uses public records such as sex offender registries, geolocation services, and augmented reality to show users the location of sex offenders.[7]

The company released another app in 2011 called "Number Guru", a free reverse phone number look up service.[6][13]

BeenVerified ranked #26 on the Inc. 5000 list for 2013, including being named the fastest growing company in New York. The company reported revenues of $13.7 million in 2012.[14]

In 2015, BeenVerified launched a caller ID and reverse phone lookup app for the Apple Watch.[15]


BeenVerified uses traditional background methods in addition to Web 2.0 and social networking to return results to a requesting user.[16] Users enter the name and/or email address of the person they are requesting information on and are given information from public records and other privately licensed databases of public record information.[9][16] The Background Check App released allows users to run background checks with a smartphone.[17] The app uses names and email addresses to run background checks through its website, with the capability of checking anyone in a user's contact list.[12] The services at BeenVerified are not free, and users must pay for access through either a one- or three-month billing plan.

BeenVerified has an opt-out process for anyone wanting to remove their own information from the site.[17] The company has also come under scrutiny in the past for its opt-out process[17] and works with companies to remove their information upon request.[18]


  1. ^ a b Lapowsky, Issie (8 December 2011). "Case Study: Josh Levy and Ross Cohen of BeenVerified". Inc. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  2. ^ Holtz, Shel (2008). Tactical Transparency: How Leaders Can Leverage Social Media to Maximize Value and Build their Brand. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 9780470460191.
  3. ^ Angwin, Julia (2014). Dragnet Nation: A Quest for Privacy, Security, and Freedom in a World of Relentless SUrveillance. Macmillan. ISBN 9780805098075.
  4. ^ Ha, Anthony (24 December 2009). "BeenVerified's iPhone app runs 110,829 free background checks in first week". Venture Beat. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  5. ^ "BeenVerified Android & iPhone APP: Free Background Checks". KSL. 27 July 2011.
  6. ^ a b Bradley, Tom (27 May 2010). "Number Guru Provides Free Reverse Lookups". PC World. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  7. ^ a b c "Use Augmented Reality to Locate Sex Offenders in Your Area". Mashable. 25 October 2010. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  8. ^ Jackson, Nicholas (3 November 2010). "Finding Sex Offenders Using Your iPhone". The Atlantic. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  9. ^ a b c "BeenVerified Checks Your New Online Buds' Background". The New York Observer. 21 October 2008. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  10. ^ "Case Study: Josh Levy and Ross Cohen of BeenVerified". 2011-12-08. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
  11. ^ "6 tips for pivoting your business". CIO. 2015-08-17. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
  12. ^ a b Klopott, Freeman (28 December 2009). "iPhone app grants instant access to background checks". The Washington Examiner. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  13. ^ Epstein, Zach (30 May 2011). "Number Guru for iPHone, Android provides free unlimited reverse phone number look-ups". BGR. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  14. ^ "BeenVerified: Number 26 on the 2013 Inc. 5000". Retrieved 2015-12-22.
  15. ^ "Software developers try on Apple watch, see more apps coming". Reuters. 2015-04-25. Retrieved 2015-12-22.
  16. ^ a b " Launches Ground-Breaking Background Verification Service for Businesses & Individuals". Telecommunications Weekly. 5 November 2008. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 30 January 2014.
  17. ^ a b c Bradley, Tony (20 January 2010). "Controversial App Provides Background Checks On the Go". PC World. Retrieved 31 January 2014.
  18. ^ Jimenez, Charlene (25 January 2013). "Safe Shepherd guides, manages your privacy online". American Genius. Retrieved 31 January 2014.

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