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United States visa applicants now required to hand over social media usernames

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https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-06-03/us-visa-applicants-to-hand-over-social-media-usernames/11172086?pfmredir=sm

Quote

The State Department is now requiring nearly all applicants for US visas to submit their social media usernames, previous email addresses and phone numbers.

 

It's a vast expansion of the Trump administration's enhanced screening of potential immigrants and visitors.

The department says it has updated its immigrant and non-immigrant visa forms to request the additional information, including "social media identifiers".

The change, which was proposed in March 2018, is expected to affect about 15 million foreigners who apply for visas to enter the United States each year.

"National security is our top priority when adjudicating visa applications, and every prospective traveller and immigrant to the United States undergoes extensive security screening," the department 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 new visa application forms list a number of social media platforms — including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, YouTube and Weibo — and require the applicant to provide any account names they may have had on them over the previous five years.

They also give applicants the option to volunteer information about social media accounts on platforms not listed on the form.

Hina Shamsi, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's National Security Project, said there was no evidence social media monitoring was effective and that it could have a "chilling" effect on freedom of speech and promote self-censorship online.

"This attempt to collect a massive amount of information on the social media activity of millions of visa applicants is yet another ineffective and deeply problematic Trump administration plan," she said in a statement.

"There is a real risk that social media vetting will unfairly target immigrants and travellers from Muslim-majority countries for discriminatory visa denials, without doing anything to protect national security."

Social media, email and phone number histories had only been sought in the past from applicants who were identified for extra scrutiny, such as people who had travelled to areas controlled by terrorist organisations.

An estimated 65,000 applicants per year had fallen into that category.

The department says collecting the additional information from more applicants "will strengthen our process for vetting these applicants and confirming their identity".

The new rules apply to virtually all applicants for immigrant and non-immigrant visas.

When it filed its initial notice to make the change, the department estimated it would affect 710,000 immigrant visa applicants and 14 million non-immigrant visa applicants, including those who want to come to the US for business or education.

In addition to their social media histories, visa applicants are now asked for five years of previously used telephone numbers, email addresses, international travel and deportation status, as well as whether any family members have been involved in terrorist activities.

Only applicants for certain diplomatic and official visa types are exempted from the requirements.

AP

Their country their rules. but ...  wow

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It's hurting the conservatives as well.

Avi Yemini with turned away a month or so back when he went to the USA to interview Jim Jefferies about he's racism and lies. 

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I'm okay with social media being put up in lots of places.  I say it often at work, social media is the greatest IQ test that has ever been set, and so many people fail it on a daily basis.

Now if only we can have it applied in the US for other purposes, say maybe buying a gun...

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This will work well. Of course Pete Smith from western Sydney will write down the facebook alias he uses when he slams the US & supports radical Muslims on the Middle East FB group he's on.

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I reckon some of you will need to go onto a 2nd or 3rd page just to list all the accounts here

😁

  • Haha 1

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Cos yeah, if ur a terrorist womble, ur gonna fess up to all the usernames you have where you discuss it. 

Sure.......

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7 minutes ago, Turts said:

Cos yeah, if ur a terrorist womble, ur gonna fess up to all the usernames you have where you discuss it. 

Sure.......

Hey! Terrorist Womble is my FB name.

Get your own!

  • Haha 2

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When I went for my Oz citizenship, there was a supplementary question on a separate sheet of paper. It said words to the effect of:

Are you, or have you been a member of a terrorist organisation ?  YES/NO :lol:

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Maybe its so when you do something bad, they can say you lied to them and deport u?  Or get connected to something bad. 

Seriously there has to be something more. If ur a bad person ur  not going to admit it straight up.  

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14 minutes ago, FatPom said:

When I went for my Oz citizenship, there was a supplementary question on a separate sheet of paper. It said words to the effect of:

Are you, or have you been a member of a terrorist organisation ?  YES/NO :lol:

Don't keep us in suspense, what was your response?

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1 hour ago, Paul Every said:

Don't keep us in suspense, what was your response?

Have you seen that Simpsons episode where Homer is trying to get fireworks into the Us from Mexico? 

"DOH! I always get that question wrong" :lol:

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I guess Izzy Folau won’t be trying out for the NFL. One look at his Instagram page will put an end to his travels.

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ESTA waiver applications currently ask if you are a terrorist or been to rogue states but your social media stuff is optional.

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22 minutes ago, Parkside said:

ESTA waiver applications currently ask if you are a terrorist or been to rogue states but your social media stuff is optional.

That's because ESTA is not a visa, it's the exact opposite of a visa. I looked at the wording carefully in that article, as my first thought was that a lot of House of Mouse holidaymakers won't want to submit that info.

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3 hours ago, FatPom said:

That's because ESTA is not a visa, it's the exact opposite of a visa. I looked at the wording carefully in that article, as my first thought was that a lot of House of Mouse holidaymakers won't want to submit that info.

yep realise its a visa waiver, just pointing out you don't have to volunteer all your socials under that scheme as I just filled one out to take my geek to Galaxy Edge among other sights

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