US now requiring social media information for visa applications

Washington - US State Department regulations now require most visa applicants to submit social media information, a spokesperson confirmed on Sunday.

The update, which was initially announced last year, is to improve national security screenings, the spokesperson said.
"We are constantly working to find mechanisms to improve our screening processes to protect US citizens, while supporting legitimate travel to the United States," the spokesperson added.
"Collecting this additional information from visa applicants will strengthen our process for vetting these applicants and confirming their identity." 
Prior to the updated regulations only visa applications that required additional screening would have to submit social media information.
When the Trump administration announced the plan in March 2018 the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) called the plan "ineffective and deeply problematic." 
"It will infringe on the rights of immigrants and US citizens by chilling freedom of speech and association, particularly because people will now have to wonder if what they say online will be misconstrued or misunderstood by a government official," the ACLU said.

Sunday, June 2nd 2019

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