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Local Expert Discusses New Laws Banning Employers From Asking For Facebook Info

(Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Michelle Durham Michelle Durham
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By Michelle Durham

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Employers asking for Facebook login and password information became a hot topic in a tight job market in 2012, and in the face of possible invasion of privacy issues, a number of states are in the process of enacting laws that prohibit this practice.

In New Jersey and Delaware, only institutions of higher learning, such as colleges or universities, are prohibited by law to ask for this information. Employers are not yet barred from asking. Steven Ludwig, partner in the Labor and Employment group from Fox Rothschild LLP, says people need to act prudently whether these laws are yet in effect or not.

“Just because an employer or a college may be prohibited doesn’t mean that a college or employer can’t go online and look,” Ludwig says, “and it doesn’t prohibit a friend from downloading the information and forwarding it.”

Ludwig reminds people that anything on your Facebook or Twitter pages can be admissible in a court of law, if subpoenaed.

“You’ve got to act on the assumption that the information can be seen at some point,” he says.

He also points out there are situations in which employers need to see your social media pages, because of the job you apply for, such as law enforcement and other public service jobs.

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