Resume Writing And Interviewing Skills Page 21


Your Personal Life and Employment
DiGital FootPRiNt
A simple Internet search of your name will lead you to
your internet identity or digital footprint. Through such a
search, you will find information about yourself in various
formats such as words, pictures, audio, and/or video. It is
critical that on a regular basis you are aware of your digital
footprint because it very well could impact your future.
Not only do family and friends check out your digital
footprint, but potential or current employers, colleges,
and police look at this as well. To better protect yourself,
consider the following:
Carefully choose what you post online. Your digital
footprint should portray you in a positive light that you
create and control. Before posting information, ask
yourself, “If my mom were to see this, am I comfortable
with her seeing me in this picture?” or “If my manager at
work were to read this, am I comfortable with him knowing
this information about me?” If your answer is no, then do
not post it.
A security clearance is needed when you apply for a
job that entails having access to classified (or private)
Postings are permanent and not so private. Anything
information. This will be the case if you apply for a
you put online can be copied, saved, and shared with
position with the Federal government or as an authorized
others. Also, despite great efforts to set your privacy
Federal contractor. Security clearances are required for a
settings on social networking sites, there are ways to
range of jobs, from upper management to custodial staff.
break through these settings. Again, be selective in what
You may never think or plan on working for the Federal
you post and check and update your privacy settings
government, but fifteen years down the road, you may
find yourself applying for such a position. The decisions
you make now will definitely impact how you are viewed
Monitor, monitor, monitor. You may have control over
by employers in the future.
what you put online about yourself, but you do not have
Depending on the level of clearance, the following may be
control over what others post about you. For this reason, it
is important to do frequent online searches of your name.
By doing so, you will stay updated on what information
Credit check. Stay on top of your finances. You will need
has been posted about you.
to have a good credit score in order to pass the clearance.
Late payments, having a high income to debt ratio,
Ask for help. If you find damaging information about
applying for too many lines of credit, and defaulting on
yourself online, seek out help. A trusted adult, the web
loans all contribute to a low credit score.
service provider, and/or the social networking site can
Background check. Agents will contact employers,
all assist you in trying to have the hurtful information
coworkers and even neighbors to inquire about you. They
will also look into your education, organizations you are a
part of or have belonged to, and where you have lived.
Do not risk losing a job (or potential job), getting in trouble
with your college, or breaking up a friendship. Take the
Polygraph. You may be required to take a polygraph
appropriate steps in protecting yourself—be aware of your
test. An agent will ask you a series of questions in which
digital footprint.
you have to answer. The agent monitors a machine that
indicates whether or not you are telling the truth.
To better your chances of getting a security clearance, do
not burn bridges when you leave a company. Be in good
standing when you leave your college or places that you
live, maintain a good credit score, and most importantly
do not get in trouble with the law.


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