How to Protect Your Resume From Identity Theft

It’s pretty sad that in recent years resumes have become more and more popular as vehicles for stealing personal identities. It sort of makes sense when you think about it because resumes contain some pretty vital personal information. Aside from the obvious work history information, resumes can include home addresses, telephone numbers, and education information. Sometimes they even contain enough information to open a credit card! It’s scary to think that this information is stolen all the time, but there are a couple of things you can do to avoid becoming a victim. Below are a couple of suggestions.

Leave your home address off your resume

The home address used to be an important component to the resume, but times have changed. Resumes are not posted or faxed anymore – almost all job advertisements call for a candidate to email through his or her resume, making their home address somewhat irrelevant. Companies today are also aware of the identity theft risks associated with resumes, so they don’t expect to see home addresses included on resumes.

Don’t apply for a job unless the company name is listed

You might notice that a lot of job advertisements today list the company name as “private” or “unlisted.” STAY AWAY FROM THESE. While some of these ads might be from legitimate companies, the vast majority of them are not, and they are just trying to get you to submit your personal information. Even if the company name is listed on the ad, check it out first before you submit your information. It’s just not worth the risk.

Sound too good to be true? It probably is.

Everyone has seen the ads – “Make over $100K working part-time from home!” “Earn up to $200/hr!” These scenarios sound great in theory, but these types of ads are usually not real, and there is always some catch. Most of these ads will link you to websites that ask for your personal information and, after you submit it, will ask you to pay a “starter” or “application” fee. Don’t fall for it – no legitimate job will ask you to pay them.

The overall message is to just be careful. Identity thieves prey on this type of personal information, and especially on people who are desperately looking for jobs. Just be patient and make sure that a job or company is legitimate before you submit your resume.

Laura is the Marketing Coordinator for RedStarResume, a business that provides resume and cover letter writing services for students, graduates and young professionals.

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