Career Information Hotline

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Protect Your Privacy Online

Wherever you go online - using email, instant messaging, your website, your blog or your social networking website - you leave a footprint.

It’s easy for potential employers, co–workers and clients to check out your online profile. All they need to do is Google you. Google yourself to find out what your online profile looks like.

When using the Internet for your work search, take precautions against potential risks.

Keep your work search confidential

  • Use your own computer, email and phone number when you’re looking for work, not your employer’s.
  • Don’t access your personal email from work.
  • Look for work on your own time, not work time. Doing this on work time is unprofessional and your employer is likely to notice.
  • Use the email address you’ve set up specifically for work search. Get one for free
  • Use job search engines or job agents rather than posting your resumé on a job search website.
  • Use, but don’t only rely on, job search website features that allow you to block certain people (such as your employer) from viewing your resumé.
  • Post your resumé on job search websites using a descriptive title that doesn’t identify you (for example, Multilingual Human Resources Trainer). Although some employers don’t like this approach, it is acceptable online.

Protect your online identity

  • Never include the following on your posted resumé:
    • Social Insurance Number
    • home address
    • driver's licence
    • professional association registration numbers
    • birth date
    Legitimate employers require this kind of information only during the hiring process
  • Be cautious about unsolicited offers from employers you don’t know. They could be identity thieves trying to get your personal information using a tactic known asphishing (a form of Internet fraud that aims to steal valuable information such as credit card information, social security numbers, user IDs and passwords).
  • Do include your work search email address so the employer can contact you.
  • Post only to reputable or well–known sites (for example, Workopolis or Monster) and sites operated by industry or professional groups.
  • Read the privacy policy on sites you post your resumé to.
  • Avoid sites that won’t let you search the site without posting a resumé.
  • Use a professional social media profile that is different from your personal profile when you are searching for work to keep your personal information safe
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