Recently, I found out a recruiter had replaced my contact information with his own and added skills which I do not have, but were ones he thought would help me get a job, and then forwarded my resume to several employers.

This was all done without permission, and I'm annoyed that someone would do this.

How can I prevent this? My resume is created in TeX and I do not pass around the source, only the pdf. The only thing I can think of is adding an md5 hash in the footer, though I doubt an employer would use it

  • Did you give this person permission to submit you for the job? Commented Oct 1, 2016 at 21:08
  • I did, however, I asked that any edits/suggestions he'd like to make be ran through me first
    – RN_
    Commented Oct 1, 2016 at 21:11

2 Answers 2


They can always OCR the thing and edit that, and you're right that the employers won't run a checksum on it, so the simple answer is that you prevent this by immediately walking away from any sleezeball who does this, and informing the employers that while you are interested in the job, this is your correct resume and the recruiter's stupidity us not your fault.

It might be nice if there was a better answer. But the problem isn't quite bad enough to have been considered worth the effort of trying to develop one.


If a third party recruiter doesn't have an exclusivity agreement over a job listing, he's going to want to edit your resume to remove your contact information at the very least. That's to make sure he gets paid. Plus, there is also the fact that some employers require the text of your resume to get cut and pasted into their database before they even look at it.

One thing you could to do is to only work with internal company recruiters, or 3rd party recruiters that have an exclusivity agreement with employers. Those recruiters are easy to identify. They usually have an email address (or a forwading email alias) from the domain name of the employer in question. And even if they don't, when they're communicating with you, they usually have no qualms about sharing the names of the client companies they're actively trying to hire for.

Of course, you could still work with 3rd party recruiters that don't have exclusivity, but may be you should ask for specific recommendations on who to trust from your friends, or from potential employers as soon as they tell you they've decided not to hire you.

One issue is that there are just too many third party recruiters these days. In this new age of internet, the barrier to entry is so low, anyone with an active phone line and a computer can claim to be a recruiter/manhunter. And you really do have to set up your own filters and not just trust anyone who contacts you with that claim.

And if non-exclusive 3rd party recruiters are coming up with job listings that you haven't seen yourself publicly listed by an employer yet, that only usually means that they're looking at a web site that you're not looking at yourself. In my case for instance, I found that many of the job listings I was interested in had been published by the companies themselves on Angel's list.

In your case, that web site is probably going to be different. It does vary based on your field, desired location, and desired company size, but my point is, that there is usually no secret proprietary database that recruiters use. Most of the time, they're just mining an aggregated form of publicly available information that doesn't cost anything to have access to.

  • That's to make sure he gets paid This sounds like BS to me. I'm pretty sure that if they don't get paid they will be able to sue the employee and get their money back (plus possible some compensation). They simply have to keep track of the communications that they'll have to show to have proof of their work.
    – Bakuriu
    Commented Oct 2, 2016 at 10:08
  • 1
    @Bakuriu, Many recruiters who contact you may not even be in your state, or in your country. Like I said, all it takes to claim to be a recruiter is a phone line and an internet connection. And being a recruiter doesn't automatically mean that you know how to navigate the legal system where you do business. Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 10:01

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