In recent articles, we've been discussing the role of online branding and social media in the hiring process, nameplate services that aggregate your online presence, and using online tools to your advantage in finding a job. It's one thing to know that your future employer may have been looking you up online and browsing your Facebook profile, what if you're profile is private?
One solution that some employers have found and reported recently by the Associated Press is to simply ask for your username and password.
To-date this seems to be limited mostly to agencies like law enforcement, which do this to ensure that applicants are not involved in illegal activities or involved with gangs. However it is not limited to these agencies alone.
This can be a difficult choice for most job applicants. While most people are certainly not comfortable handing out passwords to employers or letting them browse through your personal messages, many don't feel they have a choice. Just as importantly, many are taken by surprise when they're asked and don't have the time to think it through.
Before going to an interview, it might be a good idea to consider what you want to say in case you are asked such a question.
Another thing to keep in mind is online services that allow you to log in using Facebook to submit an application for a job. As soon as you allow any third-party service to access your account, you are granting that service access to everything.In the majority of cases this may be harmless, but in the case of a job application, the employer may be able to use that functionality to access your personal profile.
While the legalities of such things are still being discussed, it's a good thing to keep these situations in mind.
While post-graduate university enrollment has declined, some tech-based disciplines have seen an increase. Have you decided to go back to school? Do you feel it's worth the time and money for your career? I'd love to hear from you.