Social Media has woven itself into our modern age influencing everything from politics and business to pop culture and even art. Whether you agree or not, on some level, your social profile gives insight into the type of person that you are. It seems the United States fully buys into this.
Amid tighter border restrictions put in place by the Trump administration, it seems you are going to need some additional information if you are planning to stay in the United States; your social media info.
Your Social Activity
Back in 2018, the State Department announced that it was planning to require all U.S. visa applicants, both immigrant and non, to disclose their social media handles to the U.S. government. The documents that were filed by the Federal Register ask every individual applying for a U.S. visa to hand over any social media handles used on certain platforms in the past five years.
This new order would also include telephone numbers and email addresses used during that same time period.
However, the new mandate only seems to apply to a preselected list of social media services. Of course, applicants can also submit additional information or profiles that are not included on the mandated list.
Interestingly, the United States only requires this for people who visited terrorist controlled areas. So why implement this now? The goal seems to be the same; to identify and spot any potential extremists who might have shared radical or extreme ideologies that might pose a threat to the United States.
Especially during the summer months, hundreds of thousands of visitors seek a U.S. visa simply for vacation purposes, while millions of visa applications are submitted each year. This new mandate is sure to affect them all.
And, if you say that you do not have any social media at all this will not protect you. The State Department is still threatening serious immigration consequences.
How do you feel about this new update to the U.S. visa process? It is intrusive? Or, is it just a policy that coincides with the times?