Bill Gates’s private office reportedly asked some female job candidates about their sexual histories — including what kind of pornography they liked, whether they ever had extramarital affairs and even if they had nude pictures of themselves on their phones.
During Gates’s extensive screening process, a security firm also asked some women if they ever “danced for dollars,” sources told The Wall Street Journal.
Another candidate told the outlet that she was asked whether she had ever contracted a sexually transmitted disease.
It was unclear if any male candidates were asked similarly personal questions during the hiring process for Gates’s private office, called Gates Ventures, and none interviewed by The Journal said they had.
A spokeswoman for Gates Ventures said she hadn’t heard about such questions being asked during the background checks, which were conducted by third-party contractor Concentric Advisors.
The firm bills itself as “family office security” for “high-net-worth clients” on its website.
Gates, with a net worth of $132 billion, is the No. 4 richest person in the world, per the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
The risk-management firm also touts that it has several former CIA and FBI agents on its staff.
Its headquarters are also located in the same lakefront office park in Kirkland, Wash., as Gates Ventures, according to The Journal.
These interviews were reportedly conducted in recent years, and Concentric’s interviewers were believed to be finding any information that could be used to compromise or blackmail individuals working so closely to Gates, the outlet reported.
“This line of questioning would be unacceptable and a violation of Gates Ventures’ agreement with the contractor,” the spokeswoman told The Journal.
Representatives for Concentric did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment.
The Gates spokeswoman said Gates Ventures abides by industry standards during pre-employment screenings for both men and women, according to The Journal.
She added that all vendors are required to operate in compliance with state and federal laws.
“We have never received information from any vendor or interviewee in our 15+ year history that inappropriate questions were asked during the screening process,” she said in a statement to The Journal.
“We can confirm, that after a comprehensive review of our records, no employment offer has ever been rescinded based on information of this nature,” the spokeswoman added.
The Post has reached out to Gates Ventures — which was known as bgC3 until 2018 — for comment.
Concentric boss Mike LeFever echoed the sentiment, telling The Journal that the company provides industry-standard background checks that are identical no matter a person’s gender.
When asked by The Journal on whether questions about sexual or medical histories comply with pre-employment screening laws, a spokesman for Concentric denied that it asks such questions, though the information can be volunteered by job candidates.
The spokesman added that Concentric does not provide hiring recommendations, only conducts security screenings.
However, job candidates for the Microsoft co-founder’s private office said they were asked about personal information, and didn’t volunteer it.
They also said they were told their employment offers were conditional on passing the assessment during which they were asked about sensitive information, according to The Journal.
Documents reviewed by The Journal also reportedly dispute Concentric’s characterization, and show that the screening process wasn’t for employment purposes.
A consent form showed that a behavioral assessment conducted by Concentric would be used to “assess sustainability for employment” by Gates Ventures, and would include drug, alcohol, medical and psychiatric history as it relates to the job.
The form, which was signed by the candidate, gave Concentric permission to disclose the results to Gates Ventures officials, including “highly sensitive information,” The Journal reported.
The document also said it “does not allow for the re-disclosure of sexually transmitted diseases,” according to the outlet.
Carol Miaskoff, legal counsel of the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, said “there’s not a black letter law prohibition on asking questions related to sex,” though “getting the information and taking some adverse action with that information” could be cause for legal action.
Meanwhile, any questions about a job candidate’s health or psychiatric history during the hiring process “is just flat out prohibited by the federal Americans With Disabilities Act,” Miaskoff told The Journal.
Questions related to past illegal drug use could also violate this law, she added, as it could reveal an addition, which is considered a disability under the legislation.
Some people at Gates Ventures told The Journal that they hadn’t undergone such questioning, while some female workers said they were asked about their sexual histories.
Gates, 67, was probed back in 2019 for allegedly having an affair with a Microsoft employee, which was revealed after the woman penned a letter to the board telling them she had a sexual relationship with her boss over the years.
The woman demanded changes to her Microsoft job and also asked that Gates’ ex-wife, Melinda, read her letter — though it’s unclear if that happened.
Melinda and Gates divorced in 2021 after nearly three decades of marriage.
They continue working together on philanthropic efforts associated with The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
And it was revealed just last month that convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein threatened to expose another affair Gates allegedly had with a Russian bridge player after the billionaire mogul declined to join Epstein’s philanthropic venture, according to a report.
The disgraced pedophile, who killed himself in 2019, appeared to threaten Gates over the alleged affair with card whiz Mila Antonova in a 2017 email, The Journal reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.
Gates’s spokespeople have said that his relationship with the Microsoft employee happened two decades ago and was consensual, while Epstein unsuccessfully tried to blackmail Gates over his ties to Antonova.
The Post has reached out to Microsoft for comment.
Source by [New York Post]