Calif., Illinois password laws in effect

Jan. 2, 2013 at 8:23 PM

SACRAMENTO, Jan. 2 (UPI) -- California and Illinois have made it illegal for employers to demand Facebook or Twitter passwords to access to employees' private information, officials say.

With laws going into effect New Year's Day, the two have joined Michigan, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey as states that prohibit such demands for social media passwords, CNET reported Wednesday.

A number of states have passed or are considering such statutes after Congress failed to pass the Password Protection Act of 2012.

While under the laws in those six states employers cannot demand an employee's password, there is nothing keeping them from viewing the public information employees openly include in social profiles on sites such as Facebook, Twitter or other social networking sites.

Lawmakers and social media companies say they receive many complaints from users of such sites about employers attempting to gain access to their accounts during job interviews and even after hiring.

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