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Your Rights and Privacy Issues in Personality Testing

You should understand your civil rights and privacy issues that relate to personality testing if a potential employer asks you to take a personality test during the interviewing process.

Using personality tests to gauge job candidates that weren’t specifically designed for hiring has led to lawsuits. Usually employers have been on the losing end because the tests were ruled invalid, invasive, or discriminatory.

Your civil rights in personality testing

You have the following rights when it comes to personality testing:

  • You have a right not to be subjected to wanton invasion of privacy with intrusions into non-job-related areas such as your sex life, religious beliefs, and political views.

  • You have a right to expect compliance with the Americans with Disabilities law, which prohibits requiring medical examinations before you get a job offer.

  • You have a right not to be subjected to a test that has a “disparate impact” on a protected class of people, such as certain racial or ethnic groups.

If you think your rights may have been violated by a personality or integrity test, research the topic online (run a Google search for personality test civil rights) or consult an employment lawyer.

Privacy issues in personality testing

What if you’re not hired — how long will your records be kept at both the employer’s office and/or at the vendor testing company? There are federal and state regulations regarding the retention of hiring records. You can ask the hiring company or the testing company when the records will be destroyed. Then, follow up at that point in time to ensure that the records have been deleted.

You don’t want your test results whizzing around the Internet. Underscoring the serious need to protect test score privacy, reports of irreparable damage to someone’s reputation surface too often. The reports are caused by accidental or malicious posting of another person’s personal information online. Even if your records are online for just minutes, they can be copied and distributed around the world for employers to read. You can never be 100% certain that an online image has been removed.

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