JOB SEARCH / MAY. 15, 2016
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5 LinkedIn Privacy Settings You Need to Know for Your Job Search

When looking for a job on LinkedIn you need to be careful about what you share. How do you make your search secure? Here are the five ways to do this.

Nearly every high-skilled professional uses LinkedIn to find a job. The world’s most popular networking site has enormous potential to help jobseekers not only connect with employers but also get found for the right opportunities. But just like for any social media platform there will always be a need to be careful about what you are sharing with the rest of the world. This is because your online presence can often give out more information about you than you intend to.

See Also: How to Build Your Personal Brand on LinkedIn

If you want to get your LinkedIn profile working for you and keep things relatively private, there are a few of things you can do.

1. Change Your Activity Broadcasts

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Not everyone has to know what you are up to every minute of every day. If you have made any changes to your profile and updated your skills, career summary or changed your job title, you can keep it a secret if that’s what you want. On LinkedIn, notifications are sent out to your contacts (and possibly their contacts) by default when you update your profile, but you can change this setting to keep your activity private. Also, if you are making too many changes you want to avoid getting your network annoyed with all those notifications sent to their emails. Simply go to your Privacy & Settings and select “Turn on/off your activity broadcasts”. Then untick the option that says “Let people know when you change your profile, make recommendations, or follow companies” and save. It’s that simple.

2. Make Yourself Invisible

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Perhaps the best feature on LinkedIn – that other social platforms don’t have is “Who’s Viewed Your Profile”. When searching for a job, this feature is incredibly useful considering that you can see which employers show an interest in you. This tool allows you to see who has checked your profile and often gives you some information on their background e.g. their name, job title or where they work.

On the other hand - if you want to become a LinkedIn guru, you can choose to hide these details about yourself when checking other peoples’ profiles. The process is simple and straightforward although not known to many. Go to your Privacy & Settings and choose ‘Select what others see when you’ve viewed their profile”.  While you are at it decide whether you want to show your name and profile picture, reveal some basic information or stay anonymous.

3. Decide Who Wants to See Your Activity Feed

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Just like on other social media platforms, on LinkedIn you can check your friends’ activity feed anytime you want. Most people don’t know this but when you go to a connection’s profile you can see what the other person has done recently on LinkedIn including posts they shared, posts they’ve liked or commented on and group discussions they’ve started.

Since all of your connections can also check your activity feed, perhaps you want to limit the audience. For this, you need to go to Privacy & Settings again and select “Who can see your activity feed”. From there you can choose who you allow to ‘check up on you’ on LinkedIn with the options being only you, everyone, connections or your network.    

4. Ignore LinkedIn Junk Mail

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LinkedIn sends out hundreds of emails per week to inform you about a friend who got a new job or someone who liked your recent activity. While this feature can be useful, in the long run, it just floods your email inbox with a bunch of emails you don’t really care about and end up in your junk folder. To avoid this and focus on what matters – getting a notification from an In-Mail sent from an employer, for example, just go to your settings again and select the “Communications” option. In there you can decide who you want to get emails from and how often.

5. Keep Your Network Private

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One of the reasons LinkedIn has become so popular and used by people around the world is its ability to help them make meaningful connections. This is why it allows other people to see the connections that you have in your network in the hope that they can get introduced and expand their circle of contacts. But if you don’t want your connections to have any access to your network, which took you some time to build, you have the option to keep it private. This is done through your settings and then “Select who can see your connections”. Choosing ‘only you’ will make your connections visible to you alone.

See Also: How to Grow Your LinkedIn Network to 500+ People

These five LinkedIn hacks can help you get the most of your job search. They allow you to conduct your research discreetly and share only what you want to share with your connections and potential employers.  

Have you tried any of these LinkedIn features yet? How did they help you advance your job-hunting efforts? Let me know in the comments section below…

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