Privacy in Your Job Search

Are you so concerned about privacy that you’re passing up an opportunity for a job? Is it possible that “privacy” has become such an all consuming issue that it is impairing your judgement? Warnings are everywhere regarding the disclosure of  personal information.  We hear of emails that appear to be from current suppliers requesting account information or the news that you have just won a million dollars from some other country. Yes, it is disturbing to know that fraud is such a prevalent crime, online and off but we know not to disclose credit card or bank account information to unsubstantiated sources or to believe that a stranger wants to give us millions of dollars.

Job seekers have been warned  to beware of generic emails that may appear to be personalized suggesting the perfect job or the promise of finding you your dream job for a fee. It is unfortunate that there are those who will take advantage of the vulnerability of job seekers who have been out of work for an extended period of time but it simply means it is necessary to proceed with due diligence, caution, skepticism and just a little, plain old common sense.

The Internet and specifically social media is a terrific tool for job seekers to obtain referrals and recommendations from reputable sources to ensure credibility and authenticity. Equally so, HR professionals are interested in the same regarding potential candidates. Unless you are a criminal or are not who you say you are, when it comes to privacy in your job search,  get over it! Why would you want to withhold any information from a highly reputed recruiter or organization that could get you the job? No reputable company is going to ask you for your banking information unless you have secured the position and a direct deposit is arranged. Any other information unless you are concerned that it could be of a discriminatory nature should be disclosed without concern. Again, your due diligence in investigating the reputation and referrals of organizations is imperative but common sense must prevail! Leading financial institutions, prominent companies and the top recruiting firms in Canada are bound by strict policies, guidelines and laws which make it highly unlikely that they would use an individuals personal information for illegal purposes. Don’t miss out on a job due to unfounded paranoia!

After reading a number of emails recently regarding concerns about information requested by an employer, I would appreciate any comments that would elaborate, not on what the specific information was that was requested, but what it is that you believe a reputable recruiter or a leading financial institution in Canada might actually do with that personal information. Please refrain from comments which simply say, they shouldn’t ask for it,  it’s an “invasion of my privacy” or it’s the principle!

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