Ah, to be young and tech savvy…or maybe not.
Seems the hot new trend is to post photos of your paycheck on Instagram and other social media sites.
Now for all of the Boomers, this breaks every cardinal rule we were taught!
- Polite people don’t tell other people what they make.
- Private people don’t tell other people where they bank, and especially not what their account numbers are.
- Once you post it, it’s up for grabs by anyone. (Well maybe your mother didn’t teach you that, but someone should have!)
However the internet seemed to change these rules and it’s now common to see people posing with their paychecks online. It did not take long for the underworld to catch on to this phenomena, and start snatching the identities that were so freely being offered up. In one instance of many, a crime ring in Minnesota copied the photos off Instagram, created duplicates of the checks, and promptly cashed them, stealing money from employees, employers, and banks. According to he US Attorney General in the state of Minnesota, this is the largest identity theft ring ever seen in Minnesota.
Employers can’t stop employees from posting inappropriate pictures on social media – that’s a fact. However, employers CAN do everything in their power to educate employees about what is not acceptable online behavior relating to work, and posting a picture of a paycheck, which is a confidential company document, is definitely not acceptable online behavior. Address the issue upfront by updating your company policies to include this type of scenario, and immediately reach out to your employees to prevent this type of behavior.