US Senators Urge Employers Asking for Facebook Passwords to be Put Under Investigation

Over the last week, Facebook has gained quite some attention and some positive karma by announcing that it will not tolerate employers asking for passwords of user accounts. This announcement has led to a mini-drama with the news world reporting that Facebook will sue any employer asking for passwords, and Facebook issuing a clarification that it does not intend to sue any employers as yet, but some legal actions can be taken nonetheless.

The recent development in this whole play has become quite the anti-climax for Facebook. US senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) have urged the Attorney General, Eric Holder, to investigate into this brewing drama and unravel whatever truth is there in this matter.

Nathan Ingraham at The Verge reports this request by the senators, saying,


the senators want to know if this practice would violate the Stored Communications Act (SCA) or the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) — the SCA gives fourth amendment-type protection to online communications, while the CFAA prevents intentional access to information stored on a computer without authorization. Blumenthal appears particularly concerned about this issue: only a few days ago, he started drafting a bill that would prohibit such requests.

Not only this, a number of Government representatives have come out claiming that they were in the process of either drafting or introducing a bill that handles these issues. As it turns out, the US government is taking this growing practice by employers seriously, and the matter is already being taken care of by them.


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Chinmoy Kanjilal

Chinmoy Kanjilal is a FOSS enthusiast and evangelist. He is passionate about Android. Security exploits turn him on and he loves to tinker with computer networks. You can connect with him on Twitter @ckandroid.