US rolls out personal online data screening for foreign applicants

US rolls out personal online data screening for foreign applicants

The “extreme vetting” that the Trump administration has recently promised to come in US immigration is now being implemented across US Consulates and Embassies. Foreign citizens from various countries applying for a US visa may now be required to disclose all social media usernames, email addresses, and phone numbers used over the previous five years.
 
Under the new ruling, applicants must complete a new form called the Supplemental Questions for Visa Applicants in which they are asked to provide online handles they used to share all types of content such as videos, images, status updates, or blog posts.
 
US consular officers can also ask for additional information should they find inadequacies in the data listed in the form. All the information here will be used to “confirm identity or conduct more rigorous national security vetting.”
 
There are no complete details yet on which specific nationalities would need to adhere to the new ruling. The US State Department, as reported by Reuters, said that it would apply to all visa applicants "who have been determined to warrant additional scrutiny in connection with terrorism or other national security-related visa ineligibilities."
 
However, there are plans to expand the vetting move to close US allies, which means there’s a possibility that applicants from Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, and others will soon have to divulge their personal online details to the US government.
 
In a separate report by Fortune.com, it stated that the move has been applied by the Department of Homeland Security since last year, though it was only on a voluntary basis.
 
Talk to one of our US immigration lawyers for more information about working in the U.S. You can also take our free online assessment to determine if you are eligible to apply.
 
 
 
 

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