Bill Aims to Ban Employer Demand for Facebook, Twitter Passwords
ENFIELD, Conn. (WGGB) — When it comes hiring people to work for his family business, manager Joey Furnari likes the idea of being able to search their social networks, so he can know exactly who he’s dealing with.
“If they’re putting inappropriate things on Facebook or whatever, who’s to say they’re not going to say something inappropriate to the customer?” he asked.
The Furnaris are extra careful, since their Chicopee store was robbed last year.
In both Massachusetts and Connecticut, employers can ask job applicants to friend them on sites like Facebook and Twitter, even ask them to give up login information so they can go through profiles.
Representative Cheryl Coakley-Rivera thinks it’s an invasion of privacy, and it shouldn’t be a factor in the hiring process, so she’s filed Bill H. 1707 to make it illegal for employers to ask for that kind of information.
“Once they go into the internet, it’s like a billboard. When you’re young you might not realize that. You may do foolish things, unfortunately they may not employ you when you’re 32 because of something you did when you were 18, and it shows up on Facebook,” said Coakley-Rivera.
However, Joey disagrees, saying once you post something online that expectation of privacy is gone. “If you’re not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to be worried about. You have to choose how you want yourself to be represented,” he added.
Right now there are public hearings on Coakley-Rivera’s bill.
In Conn., Rep. David Zoni filed a similar bill, which is now before the committee on Labor and Public Employees.
In 2012, six states – California, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, and New Jersey – passed similar bills.