Skip to main content

A Lawsuit has been filed Against the Collection of Social Media Information

By December 17, 2019March 31st, 2021Immigration, News
Courtesy of Wikimedia, labeled for reuse:

In May 2019, the U.S. Department of State updated the DS160 and DS260 forms to include a question asking for the applicant’s last 5 years of social media information. The DS160 form is an electronic form used for U.S. nonimmigrant visa application, the DS260 form is used for immigrant visa applications. The forms collect the necessary information from the applicant including personal, address, family, travel, security, and more. For more information about the social media platforms that are required to be disclosed, please click here.

The State Department have stated that the social media information will be used to validate the applicant’s identity, they will check the information on your social media to check if the applicant is eligible for visas, if the applicant is associated with terrorist activities or will threat the U.S. in some way. Social media information for diplomatic and official visa applicants will not be asked.

Currently, a lawsuit filed by two US based documentary film organizations is challenging the US State Department and the Department of Homeland Security’s requirement for visa applicants to disclose their social media information. The lawsuit is claiming that the requirement to disclose social media information along with the retention of dissemination policies, violates protected speech. The documentary film groups point to how many people use “pseudonymous” or burner social media accounts so that they can speak out anonymously on controversial issues to avoid reprisal. But under the US’s new visa rules, applicants technically need to supply these same social media handles or risk facing a visa denial if US immigration officers catch any inaccuracies in their online activities.

At this time, neither the US State Department nor the Department of Homeland Security have commented on the legal challenge and social media information will continue to be collected unless the challenge is successful. More information will be provided as the case progresses.

FREE Visa Resources

Click on the buttons below in order to claim your free Visa Guide (E-1, E-2, TN, EB-5, H-1B, L-1, PERM, NIW, EB-1, O-1, E-3), sign up for our free Webinar, join our Facebook Group, or watch our videos.

Download FREE Visa Guide
Sign Up For Our Webinar
Join Our Facebook Group
Watch Our Videos

Set up a Visa or Green Card Consultation

For a dedicated one-on-one consultation with one of our lawyers, click on the button below to schedule your consultation.

Schedule a consultation

This website and blog constitutes attorney advertising. Do not consider anything in this website or blog legal advice and nothing in this website constitutes an attorney-client relationship being formed. Set up a one-hour consultation with us before acting on anything you read here. Past results are no guarantee of future results and prior results do not imply or predict future results. Each case is different and must be judged on its own merits.

Leave a Reply

Scott Legal, P.C. has Something For You
Thank you for connecting with us. We would be happy to assist you & send you free information on a number of topics including, Free Immigration Guides (E-1, E-2, L-1, H-1B, PERM, NIW, EB-1, O-1 & TN), Videos, Articles & Free Immigration Webinars.