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Tuesday, May 04, 2010


Steve Cole writes:

Have you been turned down for a job (or some other deal) you applied for? Have you submitted applications and never been called for an interview? It's entirely possible that the people you are applying to are dong a background check on you, and finding out something that makes them NOT want to hire you. This may be inaccurate information, or information about someone with a similar name.

So do a background check on yourself.

Start with just a Google search, but be sure to use every variation of your name. Tom Jackson, Thomas Jackson, Thomas J. Jackson, etc.

You should be checking all three of your credit reports every year. Don't use one of those sites that makes you sign up for some $10 a month service to get the "free" report. You can go to annualcreditreport.com and get your reports free (once a year, so do one of the three every fourth month). Never give you credit card number to get a free credit report; you are signing up for some kind of service you'll have to cancel.

Another possible place to search is: http://consumerist.com/2010/02/get-all-your-reports.html which has links to various place that compile data. One of them may have data about you, data a prospective employer (or landlord, or date) doesn't like.

And while you're thinking about it, go down to the office copier, take everything out of your wallet, and photocopy both sides of it. (Ok, not the money or the family photos.) Then put the photocopies in a safe place. If your wallet gets stolen, at least you'll know what to cancel and who to call to cancel it.