IBM apologises after its online jobs page asked applicants if they were 'yellow' or 'mulatto'

IBM has apologised after an engineer found racial slurs embedded in its job application page, The Register reports.

The Register was tipped off on Monday by an engineer who was applying for a job at the tech giant. The engineer clicked on a drop-down menu, which said "please state your Ethnic group".

Among those listed were options including "yellow" and "mulato [sic]," an outdated word for a person with a white and black parent. Candidates could also mark themselves as "indigenous," "caucasian" or "black".

"Our recruiting websites temporarily and inappropriately solicited information concerning job applicant ethnicity", Edward Barbini, IBM's vice president of external relations, said in a statement emailed to Business Insider.

"Those questions were removed immediately when we became aware of the issue and we apologise. IBM hiring is based on skills and qualifications. We do not use race or ethnicity in the hiring process and any responses we received to those questions will be deleted. IBM has long rejected all forms of racial discrimination and we are taking appropriate steps to make sure this does not happen again."

It is not clear from IBM's answer exactly how the slurs ended up in the menu. According to the Register, its job pages are hosted by the company Brassring, but no one could be reached for comment.

- This article first appeared on Business Insider
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