Friday, March 23, 2012

BIG BROTHER WANTS YOUR KEYS TO THE INTERNET


We should all be aware of our digital fingerprints. Employers can learn a lot about prospective employees from blogs, Facebook and other social media.The golden rule, do not broadcast something that might come back to haunt you later.

A report this week out of the Unites States indicated that employers are taking ignoring prospective employees rights by requesting  login details for social media sites. Imagine an employer, or future employer asking for the login and password information for your Social Media accounts!

It is a step to far!

The Associated Press reports that people are being asked in interviews for Facebook user name and password. Some may say that if you have nothing to hide, why not disclose it? I think it is a step to far. If an employer asked me for mine, I would refuse.

It is one thing to check out someone's blog, Facebook or Twitter profiles. If the information is public, it is there for all to see. Asking for your passwords, well why not ask for your house keys so the can sniff around.

Some states are proposing legislation to stop this invasion of privacy. Maryland plans to forbid public agencies from asking for access to social networks in this way. The move comes in the wake of an indecent in stems  2010 incident in which a security guard with Public Safety and Correctional Services, was asked for his login and password so the agency could check for any gang affiliations.

As a blogger that writes most of his stuff in the evenings and early mornings, I often use the scheduling application to spread my posts out over the day. Sometimes I like to schedule when my new post will show on my blog at a certain date and time instead of me having to go in and post it manually.

 Scheduling a post is easy to do: on the post editor page, click the “Post Options” toggle to show the “Post date and time” fields. Then, type a post date and time that’s in the future. When you click the “Publish” button, your post will become “scheduled.” When the date and time of the post arrive, it will be automatically published to your blog.

This feature keeps my blog fresh but I still get questions about when and where my posts originate.

How many people are desperate to keep their jobs, or so desperate to get work that they can not refuse this invasion of privacy because it  might hinder their future employment prospects? I do not know of any examples of this kind of draconian attempts to usurp privacy in this country, but it would not surprise me if it occurs.

UPDATE:

Apparently the Calgary Herald is running a story today that proves employees in this country are not except.

"Job seeker Rob MacLeod says he was "taken aback" when an interviewer asked for his Facebook login and password so he could screen MacLeod's photos as part of the job interview.  But privacy experts say asking for social media passwords is crossing the line of "reasonable" employment criteria, akin to asking out-of-bounds questions on age or ethnicity.

MacLeod said he questioned why this was necessary. "He just pretty much became defensive himself saying 'Oh, you know, if you have something to hide . . . we don't have to go forward in this process,' " MacLeod told Postmedia News.

MacLeod, a 28-year-old Oakville, Ont., resident, said he offered to log the interviewer in, but he refused, asking to access MacLeod's account directly."
 





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