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When hiring a private babysitter that is unknown to you, it is best to insist on doing a background check with law enforcement. This should not be offensive to anyone applying to be your sitter, after all, they are a stranger seeking employ in your home with your precious little one. Also, closely check their references and feel free to ask around. If they will be allowed to take your child out in a car, also check their driver's license. Also verify that they have basic first aid training that is appropriate to the age of your child. It is always best to be safe rather than sorry.