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T_i_B Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 06:29 AM
Original message
Facebook vetting 'could be illegal'
Source: Daily Telegraph

Employers who trawl social networking sites such as Facebook to dig up information about potential employees could be breaking the law, an internet expert has warned.

The rapid rise of sites such as Facebook, MySpace, and Bebo, where users often post extensive personal information, photos and sometimes candid details of their personal exploits, has led to rumours companies, colleges and universities use them to help vet applicants.

John Carr, chairman of the UK Children's Charities' Coalition on Internet Safety, said using the information to research applicants was "possibly illegal, but certainly unethical".

He said: "There's a basic law of data protection that if you are processing data, you are only allowed to use it for the purpose for which it was intended.


Read more: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/connected/main.jhtml?xml=/co...
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Sadie4629 Donating Member (919 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 06:41 AM
Response to Original message
1. It seems to me
that when someone voluntarily and knowingly posts information on the Internet, they have given up their right to privacy over the things they have posted.
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ixion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 06:44 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. yep... the (sort of) old addage goes: don't post anything on the net that
you wouldn't post on a telephone poll, because it's all there for everyone to see and considered public domain.
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 07:42 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. what if they were vetting for race? religion?
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GodlessBiker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 08:57 AM
Response to Reply #5
7. It's not illegal to find out a person's race or religion, it's illegal not to hire them on ...
these bases. Looking on Facebook is not the crime.
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ret5hd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:20 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Are you really that dense? No one said looking on facebook is...
a crime.

What is suggested as being a crime is using the information from such places in an illegal way.
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GodlessBiker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #9
18. The "Internet expert" warned that trawling (i.e. looking) on Facebook could be breaking the law.
"Employers who trawl social networking sites such as Facebook to dig up information about potential employees could be breaking the law, an internet expert has warned."
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 06:59 AM
Response to Original message
3. For the life of me...
...I don't understand folks that use such services under their real names.

If you just HAVE to have a facebook account, you can make it fairly safe by simply using a different name.

I prefer to maintain a low net profile. The idea of someone googling and finding out much about me is unsettling.
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devilgrrl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 12:51 PM
Response to Reply #3
20. Oh, I know - I sure as f#@% don't use my real name!
:hi:
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Sen. Walter Sobchak Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 07:25 AM
Response to Original message
4. I think it is perfectly valid,
we have a woman with a fairly explicit MySpace page - what an adult posts on the internet is a pretty good reflection of their judgement. Another firm had a lawyer who posted explicit pictures of her and her husband on Webshots, a non-adult photo hosting site, I have not seen them but they are said to be both easily recognized.

If you do that, at the very least your a serious narcissist, or seriously lacking in judgement or just an idiot. An employer would not be unreasonable to weed out such canidates.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #4
6. Looking at the whole article, the lawyers seem to disagree with him
A spokeswoman for the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), the information watchdog, said that just looking at someone's information would not break the law.

She said: "If an individual - a potential employer or university tutor - looked at someone else's profile on a social networking site, it would not be a breach of data protection."

However, Clare Murray, an employment law specialist at law firm CM Murray, said if the information was processed or used to make discriminatory decisions, it could be illegal.

She said if information gleaned from sites was used to refuse a job on grounds of race, sexuality or gender, for example, if an employer found on a website someone was gay and decided not to offer them a job, that would break discrimination laws.


Which makes sense - you can look at public information, but in cases where it would be discriminatory to use that information if they'd told you directly, it remains so.
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rfranklin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:13 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. Yes, you should always wear a mask in those photos....
I like the Lone Ranger type mask myself.
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Kingshakabobo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 12:52 PM
Response to Reply #4
21. Yeah, we wouldn't want a lawyer that was a narcissist.....
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
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lovuian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:31 AM
Response to Original message
10. A company perusing Facebook looking for more data than
was given them is WRONG

Facebook isn't a social network used that way
so a company can snoop around your personal business

thats not what Facebook was intended for but if it was intended for Employers to snoop on you then Facebook needs to let everybody know
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midlife_mo_Jo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. It doesn't matter what it was intended for
And "wrong" doesn't translate into "illegal."

And it's not against the law to discriminate against someone for being an idiot. If someone has numerous facebook postings that would lead an employer to think the person is "trouble" - yeah - it might jeopardize the job prospect.

Keep your real name and pictures off the web if you want your personal life to remain personal.
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aikoaiko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:43 AM
Response to Reply #10
13. How is it snooping when someone voluntarily makes the information available to the employer (and ...

...all the world) to view? :shrug:
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NashVegas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #10
15. Most Hires Are Already Snooped On, You Just Don't Realize It
People get jobs from networking FAR more than they do by answering wanted ads. The simple act of recommending person A for a job to person B, you've already vetted them based on info you know, first hand.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 10:01 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. True that. nt
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aikoaiko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:40 AM
Response to Original message
11. Maybe in the UK, but in the US there is no basic law as he says.
Edited on Wed Nov-28-07 09:41 AM by aikoaiko

I can't believe there is such a law in the UK (i.e., There's a basic law of data protection that if you are processing data, you are only allowed to use it for the purpose for which it was intended.).

If this were true, then you wouldn't even do criminal background checks on individuals.
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NashVegas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 09:48 AM
Response to Original message
14. Doubtful
Edited on Wed Nov-28-07 09:51 AM by Crisco
Anyone who's stupid enough to post questionable material about themselves has likely already been fired at least once, IMO. (Immaturity reaspons.)

Even if it were illegal or unethical to material out on a potential hire, how would you prove they did?

There's also the matter of my post #15. We vet people all the time when we recommend them. Or don't.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 10:07 AM
Response to Original message
17. Why do only about five people on DU know my first name?
Because I have a family, a job, a life outside...

My personality comes through on DU and if I were in a room of 100 DUers, you'd likely know me in an instant. But that's a protected space, the internet isn't.

If you are unthinking enough to post that much personl info on the 'net, maybe that's all your employer needs to know...
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Nye Bevan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 12:47 PM
Response to Original message
19. If someone is stupid enough to post anything potentially embarrassing about themself
Edited on Wed Nov-28-07 12:47 PM by MathGuy
on the internet, giving their real name, then I would certainly not want to hire them.
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