Employers violating your rights by looking at your Facebook?

March 28, 2012

Most people have heard of employers asking for Facebook passwords or access during interviews of potential employees. Likewise, most people feel strongly that this practice is an invasion of ones privacy. The good news is that two U.S. Senators have begun investigating the practice.

One of the lawmakers looking into this, Senator Charles Schumer, says: "An employer shouldn't be allowed into that almost sacred domain of things you just share with your five best friends, or your spouse or your child. You shouldn't be required to give up your private life just to get a job."

Both Schumer and Senator Richard Blumenthal think the practice might be violating computer fraud laws because of its invasiveness. Senator Schumer says "the practice appears to break anti-discrimination laws because it may yield information about the job seeker's religion, marital status, or whether she is pregnant - all information that is illegal to ask about in a job interview."

Facebook stands by their terms, stating the practice violates their policies and the two Senators currently have a draft in the works to outlaw this. Schumer and Blumenthal said they're also drafting legislation that would explicitly outlaw the practice. Time will tell if this hiring practice will soon become a thing of the past.