Jonathan J. Higuera

Employer Facebook access hits snag

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Latinos and the job market
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The increasingly common employer practice of asking job applicants for their log-in and password to their Facebook and other social media accounts has hit a snag in California and Illinois.

Last month, those states joined four others in barring employers from demanding that employees fork over their social media info, including passwords.

The new laws were a response to reports nationwide that employers were demanding access to their employees’ or potential employees’ personal, non-public data on Facebook, Twitter and other social-media accounts.

The California and Illinois laws took effect on January 1. Those states joined New Jersey, Michigan, Maryland and Delaware with similar laws.

California assemblywoman Nora Campos, a Democrat from San Jose, California, told Wired magazine that the employer practice was simply too intrusive on a person’s privacy.

“Our social media accounts offer views into our personal lives and expose information that would be inappropriate to discuss during a job interview due to the inherent risk of creating biases in the minds of employers,” she said.

Job applicants should take note that none of the measures prohibits employers from reviewing what their employees or potential hires publicly post to social media accounts.

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