Applying for a job? Better delete your social media accounts.

In 1874, Father Patrick Francis Healy became the first African American president of Georgetown University, and thus the first African American president of a predominantly white college. Racism didn’t impede his rise for a simple reason: Most people thought he was white. No one — neither journalists nor the board of trustees, neither Georgetown professors nor students — had a simple way to discover his true background.

Today the Internet makes it impossible to achieve that level of privacy. Never has it been so easy to conduct legitimate background checks or verify credentials; and never has it been so easy to surreptitiously research prospective employees’ religion, race or personal views. Employment discrimination is of course illegal. However, we know that discrimination occurs, and online searches can covertly facilitate it.