Do potential employers call previous employers' HR for job reference check? URGENT?

When you go to job interviews, would your potential employers call your previous employers' HR dept to do a verification on your employment history? I am going to be interviewing with a big company, and I'm sure they will do a reference check. I am required to give 3 referees from my previous employers, and... show more When you go to job interviews, would your potential employers call your previous employers' HR dept to do a verification on your employment history? I am going to be interviewing with a big company, and I'm sure they will do a reference check. I am required to give 3 referees from my previous employers, and besides those 3 referees, would they still call my previous companies' HR department?

On the application, it says "I hereby give consent to xxxx to contact the above referees and my previous employers for collection/verification of my employment-related info..."

So does that mean they will find out my company's contact info and then call their HR? Or they are only allowed to call the referees that I provide?

Note - I'm currently not in the US, so I'm not sure how this is going to be processed.
3 answers 3