Tag Archives: Privacy

Facebook Warns Employers Asking Job Applicants for Social Media Passwords May Expose Businesses to Legal Liability

Responding to an increase in reports of employers seeking to gain “inappropriate access” to social network profiles of job applicants, online social media giant Facebook issued a warning to employers in a recent blog posted on the company website – ‘Protecting Your Passwords and Your Privacy’ – that the practice of asking job applicants for their social media passwords “undermines the privacy expectations and the security of both the user and the user’s friends” and could potentially expose businesses to “unanticipated legal liability.” The blog is available at: http://www.facebook.com/notes/facebook-and-privacy/protecting-your-passwords-and-your-privacy/326598317390057. Continue reading

Dangers of Background Check Firms Offshoring Personal Data of Americans Outside of US Revealed in Whitepaper

To alert U.S.-based employers and job seekers about the potential dangers caused by background check firms “offshoring” Personally Identifiable Information (PII) to countries such as India and the Philippines, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is offering a new whitepaper on the subject. The whitepaper written by ESR founder and CEO Attorney Lester Rosen is titled ‘The Dangers of Offshoring Personally Identifiable Information (PII) Outside of United States’ and details the hazards of sending PII to counties that are well beyond the reach of U.S. privacy and identity theft laws. The complimentary whitepaper is available at: http://www.esrcheck.com/Download/. Continue reading

Illinois Bill Would Bar Employers from Asking Job Applicants for Social Media Passwords during Background Checks

A bill – Illinois H.B. 3782 – originally introduced last spring and recently taken up by the Illinois legislature’s Labor Committee would amend the state’s ‘Right to Privacy in the Workplace Act’ to bar employers from asking prospective employees for their usernames or passwords to their social media profiles on sites like Facebook or Twitter. Introduced by State Representative La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago), H.B. 3782 would make it illegal for employers to gain total access to social media sites of job applicant’s during the hiring process. The full text of Illinois H.B. 3782 is available here. Continue reading

Massachusetts Data Privacy Protection Law Third Party Provision Takes Effect March 1

The Massachusetts Offices of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulations (OCABR) passed strict data privacy and security regulations ‘201 CMR 17.00: STANDARDS FOR THE PROTECTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION OF RESIDENTS OF THE COMMONWEALTH’ that went into effect March 1, 2010 to protect the personal information of Massachusetts residents by requiring businesses to have a multitude of safeguards including a comprehensive Written Information Security Policy (WISP). Effective March 1, 2012, any company, in any location, that holds the personal information of Massachusetts residents must amend its existing third party vendor contracts to require compliance with Massachusetts data security regulations. The law is available at:  http://www.mass.gov/ocabr/docs/idtheft/201cmr1700reg.pdf. Continue reading

Background Check Expert Lester Rosen to Be Interviewed on Privacy Piracy Radio Show

Attorney Lester Rosen, a background check expert and founder and CEO of nationwide accredited background screening firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will be interviewed by Mari Frank, the host of ‘Privacy Piracy’ and an attorney and Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP), on Monday, February 13, 2012 from 8:00 AM to 8:30 AM Pacific Time on KUCI 88.9 FM Radio in Irvine, California with live audio streaming available on http://www.kuci.org/ (Update: To listen to recording of interview, visit http://www.kuci.org/podcasts/?ShowID=615). Continue reading

European Data Protection Regulation Overhaul Proposed by European Commission

To help individuals enjoy effective control over their personal information, an extensive January 2012 proposal by the European Commission for a new General Data Protection Regulation aims to strengthen and bring into harmony data protection law across Europe. A Communication from the Commission, ‘Safeguarding Privacy in a Connected World – A European Data Protection Framework for the 21st Century,’ is at: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=COM:2012:0009:FIN:EN:PDF. Continue reading

Offshoring Personally Identifiable Information Outside of US Increases Concern Over Privacy and Identity Theft

A new California law due to take effect January 1, 2012 – Senate Bill 909 (SB 909) – appears to be one of the first in the nation that addresses the growing concerns over the controversial practice of “offshoring” personally identifiable information (PII) collected during background checks of job applicants by sending the data outside of United States and its territories and beyond the protection of U.S. privacy and identity theft laws. This is Trend Number 9 of the fifth annual Employment Screening Resources (ESR) ‘Top 10 Trends in Background Checks’ for 2012. To view the list of trends, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ESR-Top-10-Trends-in-Background-Checks-for-2012.php. Continue reading

Social Network Service Facebook Settles Federal Trade Commission Charges over Privacy Practices

According to a news release on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website, social network service Facebook has agreed to settle FTC charges of failing to keep promises of privacy after the company “deceived consumers by telling them they could keep their information on Facebook private and then repeatedly allowing it to be shared and made public.” The FTC’s eight-count complaint against Facebook – part of the agency’s ongoing effort to ensure companies live up to the privacy promises they make to American consumers – charged that the claims that Facebook made “were unfair and deceptive and thus violated federal law.” Continue reading

Keeping IDs Safe Act Introduced to Prevent Identity Theft of Social Security Numbers of Deceased Americans

To better protect the Social Security numbers (SSNs) of deceased Americans from identity theft, the “Keeping IDs Safe Act” was recently introduced in the U.S. House by Representative Sam Johnson (R-Texas), according to a press release on Johnson’s website. Also known as the “KIDS Act,” the legislature would make it harder for identity thieves to steal SSNs of deceased children and others by limiting access to the Death Master File publicly released by the Social Security Administration (SSA). Continue reading

Safe Hiring Expert Lester Rosen Warns Employers and Recruiters about Using Internet to Background Check Job Applicants

Attorney at Law and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present an audio conference titled ‘Web 2.0 Caution! The Legal Line You Walk When Using Social Media and Search Engines to Recruit and Screen Applicants’ on October 26, 2011 from 1:30 PM to 3:00 PM Eastern Time. For more information or to sign up, visit the Workplace Training Center website at: http://www.workplacetrainingcenter.com/Prod-2757.aspx. Continue reading