Recruiters have been known to mine all information about you via Blogs, Twitters and the other digital footprints that you leave behind. An online identity is a social identity that you establish in online communities. Although some people prefer to use their real names, most Internet users prefer to identify themselves by means of pseudonyms, which reveal varying amounts of personally identifiable information.
In addition to the various sources of information that recruiters (and investigators) have today to tap into your life, I just chanced upon the controversial CriminalSearches.com via LifeHacker. This can be viewed as an invasion of privacy or it could be viewed as an easy way to do background checks. Recruiters could use Office Business Applications based addins to Infopath Forms to automatically retrieve information from this service during the recruitment process.
I recently worked with a leading retailer on helping them automate their employee onboarding processes. While building the proof of concept, I helped digitize their Background Release forms from paper to Infopath. I put in a workflow in place to automatically route the forms through HR if the job candidate indicate prior convictions. Adding the CriminalSearches services would help further automate the process.
Given the malleability of online identities, it is surprising that successful sites (eBay, craigslist) have developed on the Internet that enable two pseudonymous identities to enter into an online transaction.
These sites are faced with the Prisoner's dilemma: the deal can succeed only if the parties are willing to trust each other, but they have no rational basis for doing so.
The solution has been in reputation management systems, such as eBay's feedback system, which record transactions and provide the technical means by which users can rate each others' trustworthiness.