Google Yourself

Have you ever Googled your own name to see what results are listed? How about using Google to see where your email address is posted? Common names like John Brown make using this technique more difficult, but less typical names like Byron Hansperd can offer surprising results. Authors David Taten and Scott Allen offer suggestions in basic name and identity searching that any Internet user can perform.

Employers in the private and public sectors commonly use Google and other Internet search tools to assist with background checks for potential hires. When I am involved in hiring, using the Internet for background research is a standard practice. According to a 2008 survey of employers, over 20% of hiring agencies reported searching MySpace and other websites for information on job candidates.

For police officers, employers also search online resources for information on current personnel. Posting objectionable materials to a public website has result in trouble for more than one officer, and here are two examples in
and Ohio.

Even when the material posted by the employee is questionable, that worker will have to face the embarrassment and hassle of being investigated and temporarily reassigned pending the outcome of the agency’s probe. In this case , the officer’s posted comment was investigated and turned out to be related to a video game that he played regularly—-he was later cleared of any departmental wrongdoing.

In sum, whether you will be applying for a job or are happily employed, take a few minutes and enter your information into Google search. You may be surprised at the results from a search of your name and email address.


mappchik said...

Haven't tried this. When I did... race times and my win in a cook-off several years ago.

I'm relieved. Don't think there'd have been anything horrible about me, and my name is probably not that common, but it's good to know what any potential clients/employers might see if they look.

Thanks for the suggestion.

Slamdunk said...

Thanks for the feedback Mappchik.

I should have included some of the positives that can be gleaned from doing this as well. For example, I googled my wife's grandfather and found a newsletter article about a college swim meet that he had competed in during the early 1940s. Grandpa was thrilled to discuss the memories.