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US State Department Wants Social Media Details From Some Visa Applicants

  • Associated Press

FILE - A Chinese visa applicant reads a Beijing newspaper as he waits outside the U.S. Embassy compound.

The State Department wants to review social media, email addresses and phone numbers from some foreigners seeking U.S. visas. It's part of the Trump administration's enhanced screening of potential immigrants and visitors.

The department is seeking public comment on the requirement. But it's also requesting White House budget office approval so the plan can take effect for 180 days, beginning May 18.

People would have to provide five years of social media handles and 15 years of travel and work history, as well as the names and dates of birth of all siblings, children, and current and former spouses or partners.

The U.S. wouldn't seek social media passwords.

The rules would apply to foreigners identified for extra scrutiny, such as those who've traveled to areas controlled by terrorist organizations.

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