Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Cyber-safe Resume Gets Noticed

Identity Thieves Targeting Job Seekers

As the joblessness rate climbs, scammers are setting up fake Websites to trick job seekers into giving up sensitive personal information. A lot of unemployed people are eager to divulge information they believe will land them a job, and so become the target of scams. (From: Identity Thieves Want Your Resume.)

Yesterday, a loyal reader wrote me a note which told me of their recent unemployment, and how an increased awareness of Identity Theft had caused them to alter their resume into what they referred to as a “cyber-secure resume” .. and how that alteration had paid a dividend. They have graciously allowed me to share the message with all of you.

“Hello Tech Paul,
First I would like to say how much I really enjoy and appreciate your newsletter. It is very helpful and informative.  You mention and instruct us about malware and online security tips.  Like many others, I have recently become unemployed and found that by posting my resume online, I had left myself vulnerable to identity theft.

It came to my attention through the job section of Craigslist. A friend had told me that he became recently employed through a job posting from Craigslist, so I thought I would give it a try. I replied to a posting by emailing my (non-cyber-secure) resume and cover letter. Now, of course, I do not have my SS No., birth date, drivers license number and other such details on my resume. However, I did have my real full name, home address, home phone, and email on it.

Next thing I receive is an email telling me that I am fully qualified for the position, but before they would consider me further I must click on the link and complete the application and click on another link to complete the online credit check.  Funny, the email said nothing about the company, mission statement, details about the position, who specifically was interested in me, their name, or telephone number, etc. But, I clicked on the link for the application anyway and noticed that WOT did not like the site and I clicked the back button immediately.  Then I noticed that the URL for the credit check website was flagged with the red dot from WOT too. Since I only recently installed WOT , based on your recommendation, I hadn’t really noticed the green and red circles that WOT uses to flag sites until that moment where I said to myself (duh) pay attention dummy.

Anyway, I have since created a cyber-safe resume and cover letter which does not include full name, address, home phone, work locations, and educational institutions. The resume states that this information is not provided for security purposes. I also include a statement in my resume that a more detailed resume will be provided at time of interview.  My Cyber-secure resume includes an overview of prior job responsibilities, job titles and educational degrees and relevant dates, but not locations. For contact information, I include my first initial and last name, my cell number (which cannot be traced to my address through google) and my gmail email address.

Yesterday, I had an appointment with the Workforce Connection representative (unemployment compensation authority). I am required to post my resume on their job site, which I did (my cyber-secure resume). During our meeting, she told me that prospective employers will find my cyber-secure resume suspicious because it leaves out certain details. I explained to her my reasons for posting it that way (experience with Craigslist, fear of Phishing, and ID Theft, etc.). Turns out she had her identity stolen a year ago by posting her resume and she finally concurred it may be a wise idea.  Later that evening when I returned home, I checked my email and found she had sent an email to her distribution list warning her clients about the importance of posting cyber-secure resumes. This is what she said: One of my customers caught my attention with her cyber-safe resume.

Here’s additional information, courtesy of,, and

Kay E.”

[update: The article on creating a “cyber-safe resume” is]

Other related links:
In These Tough Times, Could You Use Some Extra $$$’s ?

Looking For Work? Caution

***Make $6,513 a day doing this***

A lot of good information here, people. Do yourself a favor, click some links. And thank you, Kay, for sharing this with us.

The byword for the rest of the year is use (Ultra-strength) paranoid common sense while online. The Internet is not Disneyland, folks.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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December 16, 2009 - Posted by | advice, cyber crime, Internet, Internet scam, Phishing, phraud, privacy, security | , , , , , ,


  1. This is so worth noting it’s going up on my security page, good article Kay!


    Comment by Dave Brooks | December 16, 2009 | Reply

    • Dave Brooks,
      Thanks. The more people who see this one, the better.


      Comment by techpaul | December 16, 2009 | Reply

  2. Thanks for making this issue more visible. The article on creating a “cyber-safe resume” is one I first wrote and published in 2001. It has been updated since then, but the issue has only become more important over time.

    Here’s a working link to that article:

    Another important issue, highlighted by this post, is the prevalence of bogus job postings. I’ve also written extensively about that. See this post:

    The recession has multiplied the scams, and people need to be very careful using any job board or even “employer” Website – not just when using Craigslist (which is often a good source of jobs).

    Here’s a free ebooklet on Using Craigslist to Find a Job –

    There are many more articles on this topic on

    Be careful out there, and good luck with your job search!


    Comment by Susan P. Joyce | December 16, 2009 | Reply

    • Ms Joyce,
      I sincerely thank you for taking the time to provide my readers and I with this additional information. I have updated the article to reflect the correct link.

      Folks, I encourage those of you who are seeking jobs to click the links and learn as much as you can from these terrific resources. Information is, after all, what’s wonderful about the Internet!

      But I certainly join Ms Joyce in reminding you that “people need to be very careful” online. Don’t become a victim of the ($105 billion/year) cybercrime. Get savvy. Learn your Internet “street smarts”.


      Comment by techpaul | December 16, 2009 | Reply

  3. So much valuable informaataion on this posting.

    … there’s no limits with those Identity Thieves.

    A few people I know use the internet for job seeking, so I sent this info. to them, I’m sure they will be happy to have it.




    Comment by Gaia | December 18, 2009 | Reply

    • Gaia,
      Thank you for the supportive comment. I am glad you passed along this information to your job seeking friends, as the tips provided are important knowledge.


      Comment by techpaul | December 18, 2009 | Reply

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