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I've never intentionally shared my contacts with LinkedIn and yet I get shown names from my address book. One was my teenage son and I tried to connect thinking he'd signed up for some reason. Nope, he'd never even considered it.

I don't know where LinkedIn got my contacts from but I suspect I must have missed a setting when I briefly installed the mobile app a few years ago. Some of the email addresses they have are out of date so that adds weight to my theory.




Came here to post the same; after seeing as "people you may know" some email contacts that may not even know what LinkedIn is (such as my mom), I strongly suspect they're doing something even more shady to grab my contacts. I have never installed the mobile app.


It's super-creepy. All you need is someone who has previously emailed or chatted to you via e.g. gmail to give their email address and password to LinkedIn to "find contacts". The seem to go about mining a graph they have constructed using various people's email correspondence/address books, even including contacts via a nameless email addresses you never provided to LinkedIn.

When I signed up I saw a bunch of people I had as contacts on a gmail account which I hardly ever use. I had NOT used said gmail account when signing up for LinkedIn (and no LinkedIn app etc.). They seemed to have somehow associated me with contacts for an email address I had told them nothing about by piecing together the contact lists of the small number of contacts I added on LinkedIn and linked the name in their address books to my unnamed gmail account. I simply don't trust them anymore.


I have seen this too, but I suspect that someone you contacted (or vice versa) allowed their contacts to be shared with LinkedIn. LinkedIn could then use the info from the other person to recommend contacts.


One extremely sly thing they do is send you requests based on who you and other people you know/may know have searched for. If you're in the habit of looking up old colleagues when logged in, even if you're not browsing publicly, they will get you as a suggestion. As a result you may find that random people you almost certainly knew, but aren't in your address book, will be suggested.


The problem I see is that all the effort I put into protecting my contacts from being shared with linkedin, it only takes 1 clueless ex-colleague or friend to do it and my details are out there.




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