Attention HR and Hiring Managers: Avoid Cybercrime by Not Announcing New Hires Online

In today’s interconnected world, HR and hiring managers often use platforms like LinkedIn and company websites to announce the addition of new hires. This public sharing of information can be a double-edged sword. While it showcases the company’s growth and commitment to talent, it also inadvertently attracts the attention of cybercriminals looking for easy targets.

New hires, especially those unfamiliar with the company’s security protocols and best practices, are particularly vulnerable to cyberattacks. Cybercriminals may exploit this vulnerability to gain access to sensitive information or compromise the company’s systems. It’s essential for HR professionals and hiring managers to recognize the risks involved and take necessary precautions to protect the company and its employees.

Key Takeaways

  • Publicly posting new hires on LinkedIn and company websites can unintentionally attract cybercriminals.
  • New hires are particularly vulnerable to cyberattacks, as they may not yet be familiar with company security protocols.
  • HR and hiring managers need to acknowledge the potential risks and implement preventative measures to protect both the company and new employees.

The Dangers of Posting New Hires On LinkedIn and Company Website

When you post new hires on LinkedIn or your company website, you may not realize that this seemingly harmless gesture can actually expose them to cybercriminals. In today’s increasingly digital world, we must be aware of the risks posed to new employees during this vulnerable time.

Megan O’Hara from EasyIT, a technology expert, points out in a recent YouTube video that new hires are the most vulnerable targets for cybercriminals. This is primarily because they may not yet be familiar with the company’s security protocols, their colleagues, and the organization’s general practices. This lack of familiarity can make it easier for a cybercriminal to execute a successful phishing or social engineering attack.

When you publicly announce a new hire on social media platforms such as LinkedIn or company websites, it paints a target on their back. Cybercriminals can take advantage of this information, posing as a colleague, boss, or IT team member in an attempt to gain access to the new employee’s work accounts, passwords, or personal information.

To minimize the risks associated with posting new hires online, consider implementing the following strategies:

  • Limit the information shared about new employees within your organization, focusing on their role and relevant experience.
  • Educate your new hires on the potential risks of cyberattacks and guide them in spotting suspicious communications, including possible phishing emails or messages from unfamiliar contacts.
  • Foster a security-aware culture within your organization, encouraging open communication and collaboration between HR, IT, and other departments to help identify and prevent potential cyber threats.

Remember that while technology and social media can help to streamline the hiring process and showcase your company’s success, it’s equally important to prioritize the security and well-being of your new hires. By exercising caution and promoting awareness around cyber threats, you can help protect them from potential attacks and create a safer work environment.

How Cybercriminals Target New Hires

New Employees Are The Most Vulnerable

As a hiring manager or HR professional, you should be aware that cybercriminals often target new hires because they’re more vulnerable to attacks due to their lack of familiarity with company systems and processes. New employees are eager to learn and prove themselves, making them easier targets for scams and phishing attacks.

Haven’t Picked Up The Culture Yet

New hires are still in the process of acclimating to their new work environment and have not yet absorbed the company’s culture or best practices. This includes understanding the proper procedures for handling sensitive information, as well as internal protocols for identifying and reporting potential security threats. As a result, new employees may be more likely to fall for scams or accidentally reveal sensitive information to cybercriminals.

Don’t Know The Key Players Or Most Of The Employees

New employees may not yet know the key players in the organization or be familiar with their colleagues. Cybercriminals exploit this by impersonating company executives or fellow employees, tricking new hires into divulging sensitive information or granting unauthorized access to company systems.

New Employees Have Fully Understood All Systems And Processes Yet

When new hires join a company, they often have limited knowledge of the organization’s technology and processes. Cybercriminals take advantage of this by posing as IT support staff or presenting seemingly legitimate requests for information access. Without the proper skills or experience, new employees might be unable to differentiate between genuine and malicious requests, making them prime targets for cyberattacks.

To minimize the risk of cybercriminals targeting your new hires, ensure that they receive thorough training on company security policies and procedures from day one. Additionally, consider implementing a policy of limited access to sensitive information and systems until new employees have demonstrated their understanding and adherence to security protocols. By keeping new hires informed and vigilant, you can help protect your organization from the increasing threat of cyberattacks.

Effects on the Hiring and Onboarding Process

Hiring Difficulties

When hiring managers and HR personnel post new hires on LinkedIn and their company website, they can inadvertently expose their new employees to cybercriminals, compromising the entire hiring process. By doing so, your new hire’s personal information might become a target for malicious activities. This could lead to difficulties in recruiting and retention, as candidates may prefer organizations that prioritize their privacy and security.

To maintain a high level of privacy, it is crucial to limit sharing sensitive information on social media platforms and websites. Crafting a job description that emphasizes the importance of security and privacy could help your organization stand out in the marketplace. Additionally, ensure that the applicant tracking systems you use, along with any other HR software, prioritize data protection.

Complications in Onboarding

In addition to hiring challenges, such exposure could lead to complications in the onboarding process for new hires. Onboarding is an essential part of integrating employees into your company’s culture and ensuring their long-term success in their roles. However, a target of cybercriminals may feel vulnerable, leading to an uncomfortable onboarding experience and potentially higher turnover rates.

As a hiring manager, take the necessary precautions to protect your new and current employees. Emphasize the steps your organization takes to safeguard their personal information during the onboarding process. A strong focus on privacy and data protection within your company culture can contribute to better retention and lower turnover rates for both new and tenured staff members.

Potential Solutions to Prevent Cyber Attacks

Utilizing Technology

To protect your new hires from targeted cyber attacks, consider utilizing technology during the recruitment process. Implementing cybersecurity software can help mitigate risks and monitor for potential threats. Additionally, encourage your new hires to set up their own secure social media profiles on platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook. This can help prevent unauthorized access to their personal and professional information.

Strategies in Recruitment

Recruiters play a vital role in preventing cyber attacks on new hires. When posting job openings and interacting with potential candidates, avoid sharing sensitive or personal information that can make them vulnerable to cyber criminals. Instead, focus on promoting a positive company culture and the benefits of working for your organization. When connecting with candidates on social media platforms, make sure to do so in a secure and discreet manner.

Refining the Onboarding Process

The onboarding process is an excellent opportunity to educate new hires about cybersecurity best practices. Develop a comprehensive onboarding program that includes training on:

  • Recognizing phishing emails and reporting them.
  • Securing their online accounts with strong, unique passwords.
  • Updating their privacy settings on social media platforms.
  • Communicating with coworkers through secure channels.
  • Providing positive feedback and promoting a culture of continuous learning in the workplace.

By fostering a secure and supportive environment in the hiring and onboarding processes, you can protect your employees and your organization from cyber threats.


The increasing use of social media platforms, particularly LinkedIn, has undeniably streamlined the recruitment process for HR and hiring managers. However, it is essential to recognize the potential risks associated with posting new hires on LinkedIn and your company website. Cybercriminals are becoming more sophisticated, and new hires are a prime target for them.

In light of this growing threat, it is vital for HR and hiring managers to reevaluate their practices. While sharing new hire announcements might be a tradition within your organization, consider the potential risks to you and your employees. Cybersecurity experts like Dennis Kolkmeyer from LK Tech and Jorge Rojas from Tektonic Managed Services from Toronto emphasize the importance of taking necessary precautions to protect your new hires from harmful cyber-attacks.

As an HR professional or hiring manager, make it your responsibility to prioritize the security and well-being of your new hires. Implement strong cybersecurity measures within your organization and educate new employees about potential threats they may face. Encourage them to keep their personal information private and to use privacy settings effectively on platforms like LinkedIn.

By making these changes, you can help reduce the risk of cyber-attacks targeting your new hires and contribute to the overall security of your organization. Remember, while LinkedIn and other social media platforms may be useful tools for recruitment and professional networking, it is crucial to balance their benefits with the potential risks they pose to your employees.