Out-Law / Your Daily Need-To-Know

A new survey shows that 23% of US adults have searched on-line for information about someone with whom they have a work relationship, including employees, clients, customers, job applicants, co-workers, and supervisors.

As the number of people posting to personal blogs grows, the connection between personal information in the public domain and its potential impact on one's professional life takes on increased substance.

Mark Mehler, principal of employment strategy consultancy CareerXRoads, cautions job seekers to stay away from posting personal information on-line because it can affect them professionally. "You never know who's going to go to your blog," he warned. "It's really best not to post personal information."

Margaret Riley Dikel, co-author of Guide to Internet Job Searching, agrees.

"You have to choose how you want to present yourself to the public. If you're in the newspaper or a newsletter, you're on-line. That's just something people need to be aware of," she said. "It's wonderful if someone has survived breast cancer, but to an employer you may look like a health risk. It's great that someone is active in politics, but an employer may not look too fondly on your efforts to legalise marijuana."

Harris Interactive polled 2,266 on-line adults in the research which was commissioned by metasearch engine Dogpile.