Check those privacy policies!

Check those privacy policies!

By Rick Cook

The Web has become an indispensable adjunct to a job search, at least for IT professionals and other techies. However the same breadth and reach that makes sites like Careerbuilder.com fertile

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hunting grounds for job seekers increases the chances that your present employer will find out you're seeking greener pastures. You can save yourself an embarrassment, and possibly worse, if you spend a few minutes checking a job search site's privacy policy and options before you post your resume.

Search sites vary widely in the level of protection they offer job seekers. A few simply post resumes as received with no effort to conceal your identity. At the other end of the spectrum, sites like Monster.com allow job seekers to post several different resumes and cover letters with different levels of privacy. Other sites take other approaches. Hotjobs.com, for example, allows you to block as many as 20 companies from seeing your resume. That not only prevents tipping off your present employer, it also lets you eliminate companies you have no interest in working for.

Even if you're not interested in protecting your identity, reading the fine print on the job search sites often pays off. Many of the sites offer additional features such as active search agents to alert you when a job matching your criteria is posted.

This was first published in February 2001

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