The risks of Googling job applicants

by Christopher Graham and Joseph Kelly


Some employers use the internet to learn about job applicants. What employers may not know is that using Google, Facebook or the like for applicant-screening could open them up to discrimination claims. Asking a job applicant or employee for a Facebook password in fact is prohibited under the law of Illinois and many other states as detailed in this recent blog post from Seyfarth Shaw’s Employment Law Lookout. That post also includes suggested best practices for assuring legal compliance including adopting policies, educating employees about them and why they’re important and, for employers doing business in multiple states, adjusting policies for state specific requirements.

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