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Update Service

What is The Update Service?

The Update Service makes DBS checks generally transferable, subject to certain conditions such as the level of check; the workforce(s) and Barred List(s) specified; and whether it was for a paid or a voluntary position. More information is available on the DBS’s Update Service webpage.

If you are already subscribed to the Update Service, you may not need a new DBS check through the University of Cumbria now, if your existing DBS check meets our requirements. This is not automatic and there is action needed by you. Please see the section below.

If you are not already registered with the Update Service, you need to go ahead and apply for your DBS check through us as per the instructions on our DBS webpage. You can then join the Update Service using this check if you wish.

Are you already registered with this?

If you are registered with the Update Service (with a DBS check issued since 17 June 2013), the procedure is as below:

  • Was the check for a paid or a voluntary position? We can only use it if it was for a paid position.
  • Email with a scanned copy of your existing certificate so that we can check if it meets our requirements.
  • We will let you know if the check meets our requirements. If it does not, you will need to apply for a new check via the University of Cumbria following the instructions on our DBS information webpage.
  • If it meets our requirements, we then need to have sight of your original DBS certificate & verify your identity.  An in person meeting will be arranged with you depending on your campus.

We need to see:

  • The front and back of your original DBS certificate, from where it says ‘Enhanced Certificate’ (below your address) and the ‘Disclosure & Barring Service’ logo downwards. If there are subsequent pages that show criminal record or police information, we also need to see these. We do not need any pages that show only the standard DBS wording that appears on every certificate (“This document is an Enhanced Criminal Record Certificate within the meaning of…”);
  • One original piece of ID showing your name and date of birth, such as the personal details page of your passport; the front of your driving licence photo card; or your birth certificate.
  • We will arrange an in-person appointment with you, during which we will need to see the original DBS certificate and original ID.  During this appointment, we will ask for your consent to carry out an online ‘Status Check’ via the Update service.  
  • We will then carry out the online ‘Status Check’ to verify the information on your certificate and will confirm if any further action is required by you.  

 To provide your certificate and ID via We transfer, please see below: -  

  • Go to and follow the on-screen instructions:  
  • Upload your files using the 'Add your files' link (the blue '+' sign button); 
  • In the 'email to' field, please enter  
  • Enter your email address below; 
  • In the 'Message' field, type 'Update Service'; 
  • Click the 'Transfer' button: unless you have an account, the site will email you a verification code to enter on-screen;  
  • Pick-up this verification code from your email; enter it where indicated; and click 'Verify'; 
  • Your files will be securely transferred to us and will be auto-deleted after one week.


Please Note, this is just to establish whether your existing DBS Certificate is the correct type and level as required for our check.  We will still need to see your Original DBS Certificate and ID at an in person appointment to complete the Update Service process. 



I am not already registered: How do I subscribe to the update service?

We would encourage you to join the Update Service with the DBS application you need to do now. This would enable you potentially to use your University of Cumbria DBS check again in future within the same workforce and not have to apply for a new one (e.g. when you get a job or do voluntary work).

There are certain restrictions to this and employers are not obliged to use it, so it is not a guarantee that you will never need to obtain another DBS check. It will however make it considerably more likely that you will not need to get further checks.

If you do subscribe to this service, it will also mean that you may not need to apply and pay for a new check if you take time out from your course at any point (which would otherwise require you to apply for a new check on return).

Please note that this service is optional and carries an additional fee of £13 per year (correct at the time of writing) to subscribe to it, which you need to renew annually. You would pay this fee on the DBS website at the time of joining the service.

How to subscribe:


  • Use your DBS certificate number once issued: you must do this within 30 days of the date of issue of your University of Cumbria DBS certificate, using your certificate reference number when you receive it from the DBS.
  • Please note that you cannot join the Update Service via the University of Cumbria’s DBS application website; it needs to be done on the DBS’s own site.

Keeping Bank Details updated 

In order to keep your subscription with the DBS Update Service current, it is your responsibility to ensure that you update any change in your bank details on your Update Service account.  Unlike a direct debit, if you fail to inform the Update service of a change in your bank details, they will be unable to take your yearly subscription payment and your enrolment with the Update Service will lapse.  This will mean that you would no longer be able to use the DBS certificate(s) which you had registered with the DBS Update Service.   

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