DHS Proposes Expansion of Social Media Vetting to Nine USCIS Forms

by Wendy Barlow on Oct. 03, 2019

Immigration Immigration  Deportation Immigration  Visa 

Summary: On September 4, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a 60-day notice and request for comments on a proposal to extend social media vetting policies to additional immigration applications.

immigration attorney nycOn September 4, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a 60-day notice and request for comments on a proposal to extend social media vetting policies to additional immigration applications [PDF version]. We have discussed the U.S. Department of State's (DOS's) social media vetting policies for immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applicants undergoing consular processing in a separate article [see article]. DHS has been running pilot programs regarding social media vetting since at least December 2016 [see e.g. PDF version].[1]

The DHS's proposal would adopt nearly identical social media vetting policies for the following forms:

- Form N-400, Application for Naturalization
- Form I-131, Application for Travel Document
- Form I-192, Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant
- Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status
- Form I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal
- Form I-590, Registration for Classification as Refugee
- Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition
- Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence
- Form I-829, Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status

The DHS is accepting comments on the proposed information collection through November 4, 2019. The proposal would significantly expand social media vetting to several important types of USCIS forms, notably including applications for immigrant visas and adjustment of status, applications for asylum, and applications for naturalization.

Those seeking immigrant visa status in the United States should be aware that the Government may consider whether information on their social media profiles weighs against their being granted immigration benefits, status, or admission. In cases where social media vetting questions are asked, both DOS and DHS have stated that a failure to answer the questions may be counted against the applicant. A noncitizen may consult with an experienced immigration attorney for case-specific guidance and to ensure that his or her rights and interests are protected throughout the entire application process.

We will update the website with more information on social media vetting in the immigration benefits and application processes as it becomes available.

Please visit the nyc immigration lawyers website for further information. The Law Offices of Grinberg & Segal, PLLC focuses vast segment of its practice on immigration law. This steadfast dedication has resulted in thousands of immigrants throughout the United States.

1. Brennan Center for Justice. “Timeline of Social Media Monitoring for Vetting by the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department.” Brennan Center for Justice. Updated Sep. 9, 2019. https://www.brennancenter.org/analysis/timeline-social-media-monitoring-vetting-department-homeland-security-and-state-department

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