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Public Offender Registries

The registration of criminal offenders in the United States is not a new approach to crime prevention, but since the 1990s, this effort to create and maintain systematic lists of lawbreakers has focused largely on convicted sex offenders and featured public offender registries (PORs). As repositories of information about convicted criminals, PORs are open to anyone who wishes to access such data and are often made available through the online web pages of government entities and other organizations. Upon criminal conviction, individuals subjected to PORs are typically required to provide law enforcement and correctional authorities with their names, photographs, addresses, birth dates, Social Security numbers, fingerprints, offense histories, and dates of convictions. However, the information provided to the public varies widely across jurisdictions. These offenders ...

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