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In the United States, the vast majority of the states are applying offense-based registries, leaving the actual risk level of the offender and severity of the offense uncertain. Studies has shown that actuarial risk assessment instruments consistently outperform the offense-based system mandated by federal law.
Consequently, the effectiveness of offense-based registries have been questioned by professionals, and evidence exists suggesting that such registries are counterproductive.
On 1 March 2011, there were 12,596 registered offenders across Australia.
Risk-based registries reflect the determined dangerousness of registered offenders, while sentence-length-based registries reflect the severity of the crime.In risk-based systems, the offender is screened against a scientifically validated screening tool, and determination of inclusion is made according to the results.In sentence-length-based systems, offenders receiving sentences exceeding some determined length are included.Individuals convicted of one or more registerable offenses on or after January 21, 1996 must register as a sex offender with the Division of Criminal Justice Services.Additionally, any person convicted of a registerable offense who was incarcerated or under parole or probation supervision for the offense on January 21, 1996 is required to be registered.