DOS Will Now Request Visa Applicants to Provide Social Media Information
On May 31, 2019, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) updated its immigrant and nonimmigrant visa application forms to request social media identifiers used for the past five (5) years for virtually all U.S. visa applicants.
Applicants for immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applications use the DOS’s Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) to complete online forms, including form DS-160 for nonimmigrant visa applications and form DS-260 for immigrant visa applications. Under a new department policy, DOS now will request the applicant’s social media history.
The updated forms will now request the visa applicant to identify specific social media platforms used and, furthermore, require the applicant to provide any account names they have held. Applicants do have the option of stating that they do not use social media. However, failure to provide accurate and truthful responses in a visa application may result in a denial.
DOS has indicated the reasoning behind this policy change is to amplify the measures outlined by the President’s March 6, 2017, Memorandum on Implementing Heightened Screening and Vetting of Applications for Visas and other Immigration Benefits and Section 5 of Executive Order 13780 regarding implementing uniform screening and vetting standards. According to DOS, collecting this additional information will strengthen the process for vetting all visa applicants and confirming their identity.
For more information regarding this update and how its implications may potentially affect a visa application, contact the experienced immigration attorneys at Monty & Ramirez LLP at 281-493-5529 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.Originally published in the M&R Insider newsletter on Family Immigration. Sign up today!