Starting Jan. 1, 2013, California will be the first state to enact comprehensive social media privacy legislation, officials say.
As he passed the act known as the Social Media Privacy Act on Sept. 27, California Gov. Jerry Brown posted on his Google+ page: ”Today I am signing Assembly Bill 1844 and Senate Bill 1349, which prohibit universities and employers from demanding your email and social media passwords. California pioneered the social media revolution. These laws protect Californians from unwarranted invasions of their social media accounts.”
Bill number SB 1349, authored by state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco-San Mateo, provides protections for students and applicants at colleges and universities throughout California. And bill number AB 1844, authored by Assemblywoman Nora Campos, gives the same protections for employees and job applicants.
Some employers have demanded that job applicants provide passwords to their private Facebook accounts in order to seek more information, the Associated Press reported earlier this year.
“When AP broke a story about how violation of online privacy has become a trend nationally, we wanted to put an immediate stop to it and stop it from reaching to California,” Adam J. Keigwin, state Capitol-based chief of staff of Yee’s office, told ABCNews.com.