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Why Making Facebook Private Won't Protect You

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the remember-to-lock-your-cell-against-intruders dept.

Facebook 550

itwbennett writes "Facebook's privacy settings, such as they are, don't hold up in the face of prospective employers who demand to see applicants' profiles. In an MSNBC report, Bob Sullivan found that 'in Maryland, job seekers applying to the state's Department of Corrections have been asked during interviews to log into their accounts and let an interviewer watch while the potential employee clicks through wall posts, friends, photos and anything else that might be found behind the privacy wall. ... Meanwhile, on the other side of the barbed wire fence, coaches and administrators are forcing student athletes to 'friend' them in order to monitor their activity of social sites."

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550 comments

An easy solution (4, Insightful)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286439)

Never register there, period.

Re:An easy solution (5, Interesting)

PARENA (413947) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286465)

Better solution if you do use Facebook: laugh at the people demanding to see what you're up to and walk away.

Re:An easy solution (5, Insightful)

AGMW (594303) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286567)

How about maintain two FB profiles, one for friends and one 'work safe' one with work colleagues on it. I know several of my friends kids maintain two profiles, one for friends and one for Mum & Dad and it works a treat!

Of course, you could just ask them to login too, and you can skim through their page(s) whilst they do the same to yours! As others have said, simply tell them you're not on FB (or any of the others) but you are willing to start one up if it is a requirement.

... and my personal favourite, ask them to send you a friend request and you'll consider their application!

Re:An easy solution (5, Insightful)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286615)

Practically that'll probably work (although it's by no means guaranteed), but it shows tacit approval of this invasive idiocy when the real response should make clear that what they are doing is wrong. Of course, that does assume the ability to walk away from a job opportunity without excessive repercussions...

Re:An easy solution (5, Interesting)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286737)

Of course, that does assume the ability to walk away from a job opportunity without excessive repercussions...

Therein lies the problem, of course. My first reaction on seeing this was "Right, I'm not taking that job... I'm not even finishing the interview." Then I thought back to a few periods in my life where my ability to live without outside support had been put into serious question by lack of employment; and realized that while I may say that now, there have been times and may be times again where I needed the job. It's easy to be choosey from the relative comfort of a pretty good paying job. I have enough savings now that I'd be fine for several months at least in the event of job loss, so I don't see me being that desperate any time soon. But let's face it. Life's sometimes a bitch. Anything could happen.

That said, I've held a security clearance, and known people with even higher security ratings; and even the Feds don't go demanding to see your Facebook profile. This shit is ridiculous.

Re:An easy solution (5, Interesting)

Apothem (1921856) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286901)

This. A million times this. The fact that employers get away with this and the Feds can't really shows that there is something seriously wrong. Coporations can invade us day and night blatantly, but if you're a federal agency you might need to jump through some hoops first. Since when are corporations allowed to go above the law?

Re:An easy solution (2)

SpzToid (869795) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286701)

If you were to ask for a citation, then I'm too lazy to comply (because we're talking about Facebook after all) but I do believe the Facebook Corporation Terms of Service (TOS) forbid this sort of activity. Your suggestion makes a lot of sense from your own personal perspective, but the Facebook Corporation doesn't care. The Facebook Corporation cares much more about the quality of the DATA for which the Facebook Corporation can (very profitably) charge advertisers.

Re:An easy solution (3)

l3v1 (787564) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286711)

FB would probably be glad, 1.5-2x "increase" in users :)

Re:An easy solution (5, Interesting)

pla (258480) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286755)

How about maintain two FB profiles, one for friends and one 'work safe' one with work colleagues on it.

Better solution - Maintain a fake 2nd page covered in information about how much you support various federally protected classes to which you may (or may not) actually belong.

Then watch them squirm when they try to come up with any plausible reason to give the job to the boss' young white Christian nephew rather than to a reasonably qualified older gay Muslim African-American (whether in the "Samuel Jackson" or the "Dave Matthews" sense of the term).

Asking for access to personal material opens a whole can of legal issues that most employers don't want, and it surprises me any would actively seek to subject themselves to such accusations. Hell, my own current employer actually has a policy banning managers from searching the intarwebs for job applicants, just to avoid these issues.

Re:An easy solution (3, Interesting)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286575)

While I couldn't agree with you more, and wouldn't in a million years be willing to work for an organisation who would do something like that, it's still worth remembering that "choice" for many people boils down to "Give us your password or enjoy another six months of unemployment.". The issue is certainly exacerbated by the fact that plenty of people will roll over in any case, but the coercive element is what really keeps things like this going. That and the moronic managers who actually feel they have something to gain by this kind of thing, anyway.

The question, of course, is what to do about it? That's where I'm stuck - it is a problem in itself, and an outright ban would solve it (assuming one feels that doing so is within the government's rights), but it would do nothing about the mentality that led here in the first place.

Luxuries (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286765)

Better solution if you do use Facebook: laugh at the people demanding to see what you're up to and walk away.

It must be wonderful to have the luxury of never having a hard time getting a job.

I've an even better solution (4, Informative)

Weezul (52464) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286769)

You should remind them that accessing another user's account is a violation of facebook's terms of service, even if that user gives them permission, which potentially makes it a violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (18 U.S.C. 1030) [metafilter.com] , i.e. a felony.

In addition, there are various other questions that employers cannot ask during interviews because doing so violates federal equal employment opportunity legislation [wikipedia.org] , meaning that accessing a user's facebook account opens them up to lawsuits.

There is however one valid legal use for asking users for their facebook accounts, namely screening out employees who'll create a security risk by being especially vulnerable to social engineering. If an employee will have access to sensitive user or employee account information, then you might reasonable ask them for their facebook account password. If they provide it, you politely tell them they have failed the interview, thank them for their time, and send them home early. If they refuse, then you tell them they answered that question correctly and continue with the interview.

Re:I've an even better solution (3, Insightful)

Shavano (2541114) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286873)

Tell the that's the same as asking to know your age, religion and national origin and you intend to file a claim with the EEOC.

Re:An easy solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286471)

Make two accounts. When your friends ask you why, encourage them to do it as well, so it seems more legit!

Re:An easy solution (5, Insightful)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286481)

Simple until a prospective employer asks you to log in.

"I don't have an account." = Liar. Don't hire him.
"I don't have an account." = Something to hide. Don't hire him.
"I don't have an account." = Antisocial, won't work well with others. Don't hire him.

"I don't have an account." = Has a brain, probably won't follow my instructions unquestioningly and take the blame for fuck ups silently. Don't hire him.

The only winning move is not to play, and by that I mean walking out of interviews. Yes, easier said than done if you don't have a job, but hey... "They tree of liberty..." etc.

Re:An easy solution (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286563)

Yes. Walk out of interviews. People have this fucked up notion that getting a job is some fantastic gift from heaven. No. Employers need you more than you need them. Even fucking Wal-Mart. No people = no profits.

If your employer can't respect your privacy, they won't respect you at all. Being treated like shit is not worth the $40k salary.

Re:An easy solution (5, Insightful)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286687)

Except an employer doesn't need you. They just need someone. If it's a highly competitive position, they aren't going to give a shit if you walk out--they've got 100 other candidates to pick from, and only a handful might pull the same "I'm not sharing my Facebook info" routine.

Re:An easy solution (4, Insightful)

glop (181086) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286801)

Indeed, that's why we need to sue them for discrimination and any other statute that applies.
We just need one high profile case that just settles and their lawyers will be advising all employers to stay clear from Facebook.
And Facebook could help: they could update their terms of service to make it a violation of their terms of service to allow people to look at your Facebook page since it invades the privacy of the other users that trusted you.

Facebook (or Google) has a role here. They can organize the defense of their users. If they don't, I expect people will have a bland Facebook page and do all their fun interaction on some other website that allows nicknames and doesn't let you search by public names...

Re:An easy solution (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286853)

I don't think what you are talking about falls under any kind of anti-discrimination law. Privacy law, perhaps. But the US is notoriously lax about protecting people's privacy in just about any context, with the big bold exception of health information.

I do think employers should be forbidden from examining what you do off the clock, unless they have what you would legally call a "demonstrable need" for such information. Say, for instance, you are a TV news anchor--therefore a recognizable, public individual. What people see you doing during your off time would obviously reflect on your employer.

But Joe Programmer? Nobody knows who the fuck he is, so if he gets shitfaced on the weekends and pics are put on Facebook, does that really reflect on his employer at all? You'd be hard-pressed to make that case.

Re:An easy solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286815)

So?

Re:An easy solution (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286869)

So... if you are the AC who made the post I originally replied to, your point doesn't hold up. The employer won't care that you walked out. You'll be out of a job, they'll easily have someone else fill the position.

Re:An easy solution (4, Insightful)

DrgnDancer (137700) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286861)

No, employers need an employee more than you need them. If you're the only applicant, that certainly gives you an advantage. The chances that you're the only applicant are slim though, and much slimmer for a menial job that anyone can do like Walmart checker. For a highly skilled programmer or senior network/system/database admin position it might be said that the employer needs "you"; for a security guard or cashier's job the employers needs a body. If your body walks out, the next one will probably do just as well. What the article talks is some bullshit, and something should be done, but telling a guy with a mortgage and two kids to just "walk out" on a position when he's unemployed is bullshit too.

These days I'm lucky enough to be in the pool of people with skills and experience sufficient that employers want "me", not just someone; but I've been in the position of guy who needs a job and needs it now. It's not a fun place to be.

Re:An easy solution (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286583)

On the other hand, someone who assumes that everyone has a Facebook account is probably not someone I'd want to work for. Someone who delegates something as important as communication to a third party with no incentive (financial or otherwise) to act in their interests is probably not someone who is going to make good business decisions. They're likely to pick supplies based on what the salesman says or what everyone else is using rather than actually analysing what is the best tool for the job, for example.

Re:An easy solution (1)

Brian Feldman (350) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286643)

Whooooooooooooa, you think social networks have no incentive to act in the interests of their users? What the hell do you think they're for? Have you ever BEEN on a social network?

Re:An easy solution (1, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286719)

The users of Facebook are the advertisers, who get a look at the large database collections. Of course Facebook caters to their needs.

The ones with the profiles on Facebook are the suppliers of information to be sold to the users.

Re:An easy solution (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286793)

They have only an incentive to SEEM like they act in the interests of their users. Their real incentive is to act in the interest of the folks paying them for the information.

Re:An easy solution (2)

darjen (879890) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286675)

Sign up on Facebook, add some friends, then simply don't post anything. No comments or status updates. Check occasionally if someone tags you in a picture and remove it if they do.

If you have been unemployed for 6 months and you really need the job, walking out may not be the best possible option.

Re:An easy solution (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286787)

I know people who have had their unemployment extended three times. They say that there's no incentive to find work flipping burgers or working retail only to make less than what their unemployment pays them, and I agree wholeheartedly.

Before I found my job I was unemployed for 9 months(though I was going to school), but I could be choosy in picking the jobs I was offered. When one that was willing to pay me what I wanted opened up, bam, I was back in action.

Re:An easy solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286791)

Simple until a prospective employer asks you to log in.

"I don't have an account; Facebook is for teenage girls." = A real man in the mold of Brock Samson or Chuck Norris. Don't hire him because he'll outshine everyone in the company.

Re:An easy solution (5, Interesting)

ZeroSumHappiness (1710320) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286491)

If it's a checkbox requirement, that won't help. "Don't have an account." "Right. Refused to log into Facebook. And now Google+, please."

I'm not usually one for regulation, but this seems like an easy one. Employers must not require employees, contractors or applicants to interact with the company through any social networking service with their personal accounts. Employers must not require employees, contractors or applicants to utilize any social networking service with their personal accounts. Employers may require employees to interact with the company and use a company-provided account on a social networking service as part of their regular job. This could easily fit into a fair employment act.

(I look forward to holes being poked in my prospective law.)

Re:An easy solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286679)

Facebook has said its users should only have one account per physical human being, and if it catches people using two accounts it will delete one of them.

Re:An easy solution (3, Funny)

duguk (589689) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286813)

Facebook has said its users should only have one account per physical human being, and if it catches people using two accounts it will delete one of them.

They'll delete him? That's murder!

Re:An easy solution (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286717)

Employers must not require employees, contractors or applicants to interact with the company through any social networking service with their personal accounts.

That's adorable.

Now, what if the employer has a "moral objection" to that? After all, employees can always go find another employer if they don't like it, right?

This is one bill that will never be seen outside of committee.

Re:An easy solution (1)

jimbolauski (882977) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286835)

If it's a checkbox requirement, that won't help. "Don't have an account." "Right. Refused to log into Facebook. And now Google+, please."

I'm not usually one for regulation, but this seems like an easy one. Employers must not require employees, contractors or applicants to interact with the company through any social networking service with their personal accounts. Employers must not require employees, contractors or applicants to utilize any social networking service with their personal accounts. Employers may require employees to interact with the company and use a company-provided account on a social networking service as part of their regular job. This could easily fit into a fair employment act.

(I look forward to holes being poked in my prospective law.)

An employer can ask to pull your credit, interview your friends and family, interview neighbors, give you a polygraph, administer a drug test, to make sure you are not at risk to be put in a compromising position, we even demand that our politicians submit their tax documents to us. This has been going on for a long time with little push back, now when an employer wants to see who your friends are to make sure you don't have gang affiliations before you become a corrections officer, this is over the top. If you have a problem with your employer looking at that refuse, you are voluntarily giving that information to them. The only question I wonder about is would an employer have the grounds to deny unemployment if you refused?

Re:An easy solution (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286519)

Which leads to the next question: What do those same employers do if you say "I'm not on Facebook"?

Re:An easy solution (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286705)

You're either a liar, a paranoid lunatic, or socially crippled. Either way, they don't want you.

Re:An easy solution (1)

l3v1 (787564) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286743)

So, that means I shouldn't have a job. But I do. You shouldn't always take all the crap that's thrown at you.

Re:An easy solution (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286799)

Well, I was just viewing it from the perspective of your typical HR dunce. :) "What do you mean, you don't have a Facebook account? Is something wrong with you??"

Re:An easy solution (1)

masternerdguy (2468142) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286535)

This. I no longer feel sorry for the privacy violations of facebook users.

Re:An easy solution (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286635)

There are certainly excellent reasons to never touch Zuckerburg's kool-aid; but that isn't really the core of the problem here:

Facebook is one stop shopping for the petty snoop; but the problem(in this context, there are other contexts, with their own problems) is the number of petty snoops who, de facto, have enough power over you to force you to use your own credentials to defeat whatever trivial privacy barriers get in their way. Facebook makes it dangerously simple; but the fact that HR flacks or educational admin types have, and shamelessly exercise, the ability to demand access is a more fundamentally problematic thing...

Re:An easy solution (1)

jones_supa (887896) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286917)

Never register there, period.

But then you don't get any of the benefits of Facebook either. Occasionally there might be some useful information about events, the school you are in, etc. stuff which you might not hear elsewhere. FB is handy for contacting people too. It's maybe optimal to be in the wagon at least with a simple account.

EOE (1)

Xacid (560407) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286445)

Think a prospective employer could do this without knowing an applicant's age, race, sexual orientation, marriage status, and so on? Doubtful.

Re:EOE (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286485)

They're allowed to know those things, they're just not allowed to base any decisions or treatment on them.

Re:EOE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286761)

They are not allowed to ask about some of those things.

Re:EOE (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286585)

Not to worry, citizen, our house counsel is on call during HR's operating hours in order to provide a nebulous-but-entirely-legal justification for any hiring and firing decisions we may wish to make.

Which would you give up first? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286447)

Facebook?
A job?

Some colleagues and I were discussing this yesterday, and came to the conclusion that we'd dump facebook first, but the job wouldn't be far behind. The problem is when every company is doing this. (The excuse our HR gave to justify ramming random drug tests down our necks).

Re:Which would you give up first? (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286693)

If "every company" is doing it, then every company deserves to fail. Their ex-employees should take their skills and experience and start a new company of their own, minus the bullshit. If you've worked your way into a situation where you can't afford to leave an abusive job, to find or create a better one, that should be your first goal. Save up enough so you can have a few months of freedom. It's better to make a small sacrifice now, than live miserably for the next 10-15 years or until the company really shits down your throat by laying you off.

Common Sense (1, Interesting)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286449)

Another reminder of why one shouldn't social network at all. Some may say that an employer or coach may force you to get a facebook profile, but it's much easier to fight it, let it slip through the cracks, or even comply when you get to start from a clean slate.

Re:Common Sense (1)

kj_kabaje (1241696) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286495)

Perhaps "old school" social networking is the way to go?  I find that there's a big differences between friends and "friends".

Re:Common Sense (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286741)

Indeed. Friends don't let friends post in <tt>.

Re:Common Sense (1)

gorzek (647352) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286749)

There's only a difference if you allow there to be. I only friend people that I actually know on some level--I know them in real life, or I've interacted with them substantially online. I don't approve requests from people I don't know at all, or just barely know. Some people make it a game, seeing if they can collect over 1000 friends or whatever. Just because they do it doesn't mean you have to. I have about 150 and that's not likely to fluctuate much.

Wow (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286451)

Between cell phone location and call logs, and Facebook, Americans now volunteer for a kind of self-surveillance the former USSR only dreamt of having on its citizens!

Re:Wow (2)

SJHillman (1966756) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286511)

Sad but true. I have a feeling if Stalin era USSR citizens had a Facebook equivalent, they would be much smarter than modern Americans about what they put on it. Comrade.

Re:Wow (2)

captainpanic (1173915) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286547)

In Soviet Russia, Facebook posts on you!

Belgium! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286453)

I'm happy to live in a country where such practices are illegal.

Re:Belgium! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286773)

Watch your language, you stupid turlingdrome!

Decline (5, Insightful)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286461)

We all seem very determined to turn our countries into fascist states don't we? This sort of intrusion into people's private lives shouldn't be tolerated, but the public outcry is negligible.

Re:Decline (3, Informative)

kj_kabaje (1241696) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286513)

Turning? Where do you live that isn't fascist already (in the classical sense)?  Business and government do seem rather cozy pretty much where you go.

Priorities (1)

In hydraulis (1318473) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286463)

What matters most to you? Weigh it up. Right to personal privacy off-the-clock vs need for immediate employment under debasing conditions.

Then excuse yourself, grab your jacket and leave the building.

Re:Priorities (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286729)

And hope you don't get kicked off unemployment? The rent doesn't pay itself, you know.

News at 11 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286483)

Facebook and Scientology.
We need those and similar companies to identify worthless or stupid people.

You will *always* safe or earn money when you know who are the worthless or stupid people.

Distress password? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286487)

It shouldn't be hard to allow users to add a distress password that would make Facebook appear logged in but would hide anything that would not be visible to outsiders.

I have never had a fb account, ever (1)

gelfling (6534) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286497)

And likely never will. I suspect that's so far out of normal that they simply won't believe me. So I'll create an account that's simply never used. Maybe they won't believe that either. Who knows.

Re:I have never had a fb account, ever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286821)

I went through the insane process of "actually" deleting my (very fallow) Facebook account two years ago. I tried to log back in a few months ago just to see if it was really gone, I could not get in.

(Not that I believe the few pics and posts I had in there are really gone.)

An prospective employer recently asked me to list my social media accounts (no passwords or usernames, just the services... which tells me they can simply buy the data from somewhere). All I have is Linked In. I hope they believe that.

Don't work there? (0)

guttergod (94044) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286517)

Seriously, if someone tells me that I have to go through a whipping session to get a job, I'd decline. The same goes here.

No worries (1)

Jawnn (445279) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286521)

I have a FB account, but it's virtually unused, and of very little utility to a prospective employer. Nevertheless, any employer who demanded to make such an invasion of privacy would be one I would cross off my list in that same instant.

Re:No worries (1)

Riskable (19437) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286875)

There's employers out there that would view a never-updated or rarely-updated Facebook account as anti-social behavior and a troublesome trait. It's sad, scary, and true.

Never create a FB or social network in your name (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286539)

The facebook acct I use is not my real name. Just provide the acct name to your friends that you want to interact with.

John Smith Jr XXXVi

Shocking... (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286561)

The moral of the story(as always) would appear to be that purely rules-based protections(even when they aren't fundamentally flawed by design, as facebook's certainly are) are essentially useless in the face of a real power imbalance.

Facebook is a bit novel in that it produces such a very juicy target for lifestyle police, and one that is fairly persistent; but it isn't as though there is any conceivable privacy policy/enforcement mechanism that could protect you from somebody who has the real world power to make you defeat it for them.

You know how you can tell a boss is an asshole? (4)

evilRhino (638506) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286573)

They ask you to log in to your Facebook account before they even know you. If this happened to me, I would refuse and then politely excuse myself.

Re:You know how you can tell a boss is an asshole? (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286811)

Yeah, I'd end the interview at that point. No-one is going to be willing to pay me enough for me to accept that level of intrusion into my personal life.

Just lie (1)

Zilog (932422) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286601)

Requiring future employees Facebook profiles access is just dumb.

Job seekers just have to make one more profile (preferably when registering the first time), a fake, neutral profile (name.firstname instead of firstname.name, etc.). I bet one day you 'll find specialized services for maintening fake/neutral profiles. Facial recognition should not be a trouble with "adequates" shooped profile pictures.

Might as well follow us around... (1)

germany-runt (950755) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286613)

I mean hey...if they want to see our "private" facebook page, they might as well pay a private investigator to follow us around and see what we are up to in case we forget to post something to facebook. I'm sure there were a few "shady" things I've done that an employer would love to know but outside of the 8-4 they don't have much of a right to know what I'm up to. Maybe I'm wrong but I guess there should be an certain expectation of privacy. Then again, if they really want to see my facebook profile they will see how boring my life is and how I only post pictures of my dog.

Re:Might as well follow us around... (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286735)

Some places do hire a PI during the hiring process, but those jobs are rare and often involve security clearances.

That said, id still walk if they asked to look at any of my *private* accounts.

How bold (and ignorant) of them (1)

AttillaTheNun (618721) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286617)

Are they also asking to log into my bank accounts so they can monitor my financial status and transaction history?

Another reason to not use facebook ... (3, Interesting)

DiSKiLLeR (17651) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286637)

I used to use facebook since the early days.

But then I deleted it. My google+, facebook, all gone.

Got sick of the privacy issues, having my personal information being sold for money (while I get NO benefit from it), and now THIS ....

Re:Another reason to not use facebook ... (1)

Tim C (15259) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286829)

No, it's a reason not to seek employment with arseholes.

Imagine if the story were 10 years ago, about employers wanting access to your personal email account or ICQ chat history. Would your advice still be not to use it?

Make a fake account before you go to the intrview? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286673)

What about having a google+ account for work and a hidden/private facebook account for your friends?

easy, set up a dead end friend list (2)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286677)

facebook lets you group friends and assign permissions to those groups as to what they can see. just group the boss and your teachers into a dead end group, set it up in the permissions not to allow them to see anything or the very bare minimum and that's all

Re:easy, set up a dead end friend list (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286851)

facebook lets you group friends and assign permissions to those groups as to what they can see. just group the boss and your teachers into a dead end group, set it up in the permissions not to allow them to see anything or the very bare minimum and that's all

At least read the summary instead of just the title. they are asking you to log into your account in front of the employer...

Re:easy, set up a dead end friend list (1)

hrieke (126185) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286859)

Problem is that the teachers & bosses might have other friends on your friends list, in which case a simple slip up on a mutual friend's posting can defeat your privacy settings. Then it asks the question, what's going on and why haven't we seen more postings from you?

Terms of Service?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286683)

Why is no one raising the issue that demanding users hand over passwords violate Facebook's Terms of Service [facebook.com] ?:
4. Registration & Account Security
8. You will not share your password, (or in the case of developers, your secret key), let anyone else access your account, or do anything else that might jeopardize the security of your account.
9. You will not transfer your account (including any page or application you administer) to anyone without first getting our written permission.

Unfortunately, with the job market so tight, I'm sure applicants would be reluctant to push back on interviewers who either ask for passwords or ask for the applicant to login to one of these sites. However, I would be suspect of any employer that demands I violate terms of service as a condition of employment. Indeed, I would be suspect of any prospective employee who so readily violates such agreements.

Potential Employeer? (2)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286691)

Not if they are making those sorts of demands of me. Same goes for any other "activity". If they are demanding i give up my privacy to make them happy, I'm gone.

It stopped being your private life (5, Insightful)

Linegod (9952) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286695)

It stopped being your private life when you posted it to the Internet.

Re:It stopped being your private life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286803)

I notice you spam-proof your email address but still post it. pasnak@warpedsys.ska. (Sorry, it stopped being your spam-free email address when you posted it online.)

Fighting gang infiltration (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286713)

This (perhaps naive) effort is an attempt to prevent gang agents from infiltrating the department. Local gangs are actively recruiting relatives and acquaintances without criminal histories to work as correctional officers. Many of those job applicants are barely literate and do not realize that their Facebook pages are a give away of their gang connections. They simply give up that information. Apparently, the next step would be full lifestyle checks akin to what fed agencies do. Much more expensive but also effective. Disclaimer: I do work for MD DPSCS.

The ONLY way to "win"? Don't PLAY! apk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286725)

That's all I have to say about Facebook really: Too bad something that has potential to keep you in touch with old friends OR maybe make new ones (or even dates) has "gone sour" & is being abused/misused!

Yes - this is a HUGE part of the "why" of WHY I don't use it myself - & I really wouldn't be silly enough to post EVERY DAMNED THING I do on it either, because no matter what you put down, someone's either not going to like it, or find fault with YOU by it...

Man - I see this shit going on constantly by employers or law enforcement lately, etc./et al... it's taking away from using the thing imo!

(I also do feel that people might post TOO MUCH of their personal lives in it @ times as well - they're using it as a 'daily journal', except the entire planet can see it... is this a 'good thing'? I think not...),

Worse still?

I, for a FACT, know that many people create & start using 'fake accounts', in addition to their true one...

E.G.-> I've watched an old friend I know do this after a breakup of a 4++ yr. relationship use facebook to 'stalk' & track the doings of his former girlfriend.

Do I think that's 'right'?? No. In fact, I think it's a WEE bit 'sick' but that's what *love* (for lack of a better expression here, because I do NOT consider being possessive to such an extent, love) does to people @ times.

In fact, I keep telling him what my subject-line above says - to stop doing it, quit playing a game you CANNOT WIN, and get her OUT OF HIS THOUGHTS & LIFE for good (she's gone anyhow, has another guy).

Anyhow/Anyways:

This is the kind of crap that makes me realize that being single has a LOT of savings on "drama" if not trouble. The worst kind of trouble - the kind one can create for themselves.

(Yes, just like they do on this website & others with 'registered luser' accounts)

They use these multiple/doppleganger accounts to surveil &/or stalk others no less....

* In the end?? Yes... it's just "Human Nature @ it's Finest" I suppose... Seems that the bogus side of us always seems to "shine through" - how sad.

APK

P.S.=> It's truly interesting watching Facebook "play out", because it only mirrors what I have seen (doubtless many of yourselves as well) online from the days of IRC for myself (1994-2001), & right into forums boards such as this one!

... apk

Re:The ONLY way to "win"? Don't PLAY! apk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286827)

E.G.-> I've watched an old friend I know do this after a breakup of a 4++ yr. relationship use facebook to 'stalk' & track the doings of his former girlfriend.

Do I think that's 'right'?? No. In fact, I think it's a WEE bit 'sick' but that's what *love* (for lack of a better expression here, because I do NOT consider being possessive to such an extent, love) does to people @ times.

In fact, I keep telling him what my subject-line above says - to stop doing it, quit playing a game you CANNOT WIN, and get her OUT OF HIS THOUGHTS & LIFE for good (she's gone anyhow, has another guy).

I bet you also tell him to blackhole her in his hosts file, eh?

The only winning move .... (1)

Miser (36591) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286757)

.... is not to play.

Seriously. Lots of my friends want me to join facebook but I staunchly refuse.

Call me old fashioned (at 35) but I consider Facebook and social networking a fad.

Maybe it doesn't help that I still check my mail with (al)pine. :)

-Miser

WTF (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286809)

So what the fuck stops me from having two or more facefuck accounts? One that I actually use, and one for shitheads who demand to see my fucking facefuck page?

Not a fucking thing. That said, I'd only need one, since I facefuck and fuckspace and shitter are all waste-of-time sites.

If I were an employer, I would ask anyone applying for a job with me to show me their social media or networking pages, or whatever the shit. If they do, they're spineless pussies so I wouldn't hire them. If they refuse, but they acknowledge having accounts, I would not offer them jobs because they obviously have time-management problems. If they have so much free time that they can waste it on facefuck or shitter or myshit or whatever the fuck, they are shitty potential employees, so they can fuck off, I'll hire someone who doesn't waste time on fuckface or fuckshitter or whatever useless waste of time bullshit site there is on the interwebs then.

Anyone else tired of hearing about Faceshit.com, Myfuck.com and Fuckr.web or whatever the shit?

Never before have so many people with nothing to say, said so little to so few.

Deny that you're a member (1)

mshenrick (1874438) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286819)

Say you're not on Facebook. Hide yourself from search, or deactivate your account temporarily

Toggle (1)

Rinisari (521266) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286825)

Could you deactivate it before the interview, then reactivate it later? Change your password to a random string from http://strongpasswordgenerator.com/ [strongpass...erator.com] so that you can't know it and then reset your password later. Do this for everything they'd want to look at.

Thoughts?

Society demands dishonesty, and since... (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286837)

...enemies don't deserve honesty, you should lie, cheat, evade, obfuscate and bullshit as expedient.

I enjoy deceiving people who piss me off. They deserve it.

e-voting bad (1)

sckeener (137243) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286871)

And this is why e-voting should be killed off. FB is something that is neutral. Employers and employees don't have any issues talking about why they want or don't want to reveal profiles. Overseeing someone's e-voting is taboo at the moment because for decades that hasn't been an option. Give it a generation and we'll have Tuesday Church Services where everyone who goes to your church is expected to attend for a voting party, where the computers are not hidden behind curtains and your neighbors can look over your shoulder. We'll have some straglers who claim they can't go to their Church event because their boss wants them to do the same. They'll tell their boss that their Church requires them to be there and since bosses don't want to run afowl of the 1st amendment, they'll let them go saying 'bring a print out to work.' When in reality they go home where their spouse watches over their shoulder instead and then as they doctor up a screen shot so their boss doesn't know they voted.

Says who? (1)

StoryTyme (2591081) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286881)

If anyone buckles to this or can't think of an excuse as simple as "I'm not on facebook." is a fool. More importantly, that site is nothing but mouth breathers.

SFM , SFE , real Three accounts needed (1)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286889)

Almost all the savvy kids have been creating *two* on line avatars, one personal and one SFM. Safe for Mom. Now may be they will use SFM as SFE (Safe for Employers) or they will create yet another separate avatar for SFE. Looks like the only thing easier than creating on line avatars is creating corporations. "Corporations are people my friend". Now "Avatars are your friend my corporations".

Grow a pair (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286891)

...and refuse to let people invade your privacy. I would delete my Facebook profile before letting a prospective employer login and browse it.

Turn the tables (1)

iB1 (837987) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286905)

If you're asked in an interview to provide your FaceBook login details, then ask everyone on the interviewing panel to do the same. And then go through their profile bit by bit, querying all photos and status updates. They'd soon change their ways.

But seriously, is this getting to be the normal thing to do in the USA? I've never heard of anything like this in the UK. It sounds horrendous.

I (honestly) do not have a Facebook account (0)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 2 years ago | (#39286907)

Just Linked In. Do I not get a job?

(Seems that if you are over 30 and have a Facebook account, it calls into question your maturity anyway, no need to actually look at your profile.)

FB - What's that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39286911)

a) I have a FB account, but never use it. Nothing I've put there is private.
b) I have 1 friend on that account a guy with my same, fairly unique, name - he is a distant relative
c) I could not log into my own FB account since I don't know the password at a drop of the hat. That data is stored elsewhere and is probably a 55 character, randomly generated passphrase. I honestly do not know it.
d) My home network blocks facebook.net/.com/.org and about 10 other permutations. Nobody on my home network using any device gets to FB or twitter anything or to much of google. Every few months, I comment out the settings in my DNS and allow FB long enough to login and keep the account "active."

**Anything** you post to any online service should be expected to become public and be posted on the front page of the new york times. If you have some other expectation, you are wrong.

Have you ever read the facebook privacy policy? Anything you post can be used by them, forever, for any purpose. Don't be stupid.

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