So the new job requires all incoming employees to go through a background check conducted by Kroll. I used to cover Kroll occasionally when I reported on security issues back in the day. They are big and serious and kind of scary in a silent, stealthy, Men in Black kind of way. Today I got a call from one of the Kroll people saying that they couldn’t get in touch with any of the HR people at one of my old jobs (ironically, the one where I covered security), and did I happen to have my W-2s from 5 years ago on hand? Because, you know, I carry all my W-2s around in my bag for just such an occasion. In fact, I do not have my tax returns from 5 years ago. I’m of the “keep your birthday cards but not your old bank statements” school of thought, so my records only go back 3-4 years. Also, I was not under the impression that I was going through the checking process for government security clearance, which is what this suddenly felt like.
I called the woman back and gave her my old boss’s email address because he’s still with the company. She seemed satisfied with that, but I still got the distinct feeling that she thought I’d done something very, very wrong and was trying to cover it up. Do people really lie on their resumes that often? I’m scrupulously honest about that kind of thing because that’s how I was brought up (and also because I get nauseous just thinking at the kind of humiliation that such lies would cause), so I wasn’t worried going into the background check. But I kind of felt like she expected me to fess up about my pot use in college or something. It’s just a job, lady.