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US Now Requiring Visa Applicants to Provide Social Media Details

People applying for US visas, even tourist visas, will now have to provide their current and pas email addresses and phone numbers. In addition, they will have to submit five years’ worth of information about their activities on social media platforms like Facebook, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

The new policy, which will impact around 15 million visa applicants per year, is supposed help US officials “screen out terrorists, public safety threats, and other dangerous individuals from gaining immigration benefits and setting foot on US soil,” a US State Department official said. The measurements are an extension of the “extreme vetting” policy that previously applied only to people that had been in areas controlled by US-designated terrorist organizations.

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