State auditors are casting a critical eye at the Arizona database used for conducting background checks of people seeking certain types of jobs or work licenses.
The database also helps criminal justice officials decide whether defendants get plea bargains or sentencing leniency.
A report released Friday by the Auditor General's Office said public safety may be put at risk by reporting gaps and a backlog in the central depository of criminal history records.
The Arizona Department of Public Safety maintains the database, updating it with reports from law enforcement agencies and courts.
The department said it accepts most of the auditors' findings and will implement multiple recommendations.