Password Protection Bill Passes in MD

Maryland employers will no longer be able to trample on the online privacy rights of job applicants or employees thanks to a new bill now on the desk of Gov. Martin O’Malley.

The proposed legislation stops hiring managers and others from requiring that job applicants or employees disclose their log-ins for social media websites such as Twitter or Facebook, according to the Associated Press.

Advocates of the law say the fast-growing practice is intrusive and intimidates both job-seekers and workers. Seven other U.S. states have proposed similar legislation to limit employer access to social media account information, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

In Maryland, the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services used the practice to screen people seeking jobs as correctional officers. Last year, the department assessed 2,689 applicants and found that seven were rejected based in part on information posted on their social media profiles, according to the AP.

After complaints about the practice from the American Civil Liberties Union, the department issued a revised policy that asked job applicants to participate in the review of their social media accounts on a voluntary basis. The new process stops short of requesting password information, according to the AP.

If you or someone you know has experienced an invasion of privacy by an employer, contact Sokolove Law for a free legal consultation. Call us today at (877) 490-6520.