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Social media these days makes it easy for people to gain access into anyone's personal life. But the question is, do employers have the right to force or find ways to get access to applicant's social networking accounts?
A state Senator says no and he introduced a bill to prevent it.
State Senator Tyson Larson introduced LB 58. The bill would prevent two things, make it illegal for an employer or potential employer to require or request that employees provide user names, passwords or any account information.
It also would prohibit access to ones accounts through third parties.
Here's what some avid social media users had to say.
"I think that they should be able to. If you're in, like, a teaching field because you're working with kids you should morally be a good influence," said Shayna Cepel.
"I personally would say it's none of their business. That's your personal business," Duane Leibbrandt said.
"Personally, I believe that employers should have the right to see their employees on Facebook and see what they're doing. That way they know who they're hiring, but I don't think they need passwords to be able to do that, that's going too far," said Jacob Martikaiaen
Some employers around the country have stopped considering people for jobs if they don't hand over social media information.
If enacted, under LB 58 employers who violate the law could be sued by the affected employee or applicant.
Attorney Mike Klein supports protecting employee's privacy.
"Certainly, there is an expectation of privacy it seems to me which is constitutionally protected when one posts on Facebook," said Attorney Michael Klein.
But no one ever expected such an explosion of social media in the 21st century.
According to Social Media Today people spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook.
LB 58 would make it illegal for an employer to make an employee log onto a social media site in his or her presence, or access it indirectly through another person.
"Under existing law arguably an employer could require an employee to provide information if the employer thought the employee was disclosing some confidential information or otherwise bad mouthing the employer somehow," Klein said.
Some employers argue the need to access employee's accounts to protect proprietary information or trade secrets.
The Nebraska proposal attempts to address such concerns by preserving an employer's right to investigate an employee for unauthorized downloading of information.
The law will not apply to electronic devices or accounts employers provide to staff members for work.
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