Social Networking Background Checks Again!

Nick Fishman

Is anyone sick of my rants about why it isn’t a good idea to use Social Networking sites when conducting background checks on your job candidates?  If you answered yes, you might not want to read this post.

A company called Yasani is now offering a free internet search tool which will allow employers to view a candidate’s online persona whether on Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn and get this, online shopping wish lists! So let’s get this straight, if I’ve posted that I would like to buy a new flat screen TV, an employer can decide not to hire me?  Are you kidding me?

Here a couple reasons why employers could get into hot water using sites like these when making hiring decisions:

  • There is no way to authenticate the information for accuracy
  • Anyone can establish a profile in any one’s name and post whatever they like
  • Photographs can be doctored
  • Evaluating these site provides access to personal information such as religion, personal beliefs, sexual orientation, race, etc.
  • How do you evaluate the information found consistently?

Do you really want to spend the time defending yourself for discrimination and negligent hiring practices?

If you are interested in learning more about this topic and other Technology Trends in Background Screening, please sign up for a free webinar I will be conducting for JobMachine on January 29th.

By the way, I have been told by numerous attorneys that using sites such as Facebook and MySpace for employment screening purposes violates the user agreement that users must agree to when signing up for these services.

Still think this is a good practice?

Nick Fishman

Nick Fishman is the co-founder of EmployeeScreenIQ, a leading, global employment background screening provider, and serves as the company’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. He pioneered the creation of EmployeeScreen University, the #1 educational resource on employment background checks for human resources, security and risk management professionals. A recognized industry expert, Nick is a frequent author, presenter and contributor to the news media. Nick is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio and Texas.