Lively and in-depth discussions of city news, politics, science, entertainment, the arts, and more.
Hosted by Larry Mantle
Airs Weekdays 10 am - 12 pm

Department of Homeland Security to collect social media data on immigrants

Facebook's homepage.
Facebook's homepage.
Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

Listen to story

Download this story 14MB

Last week, the Department of Homeland Security updated one of its Federal Register pages to say it will collect publicly available social media information about incoming immigrants for more stringent screening.

The new language says the DHS will collect “social media handles, aliases, associated identifiable information, and search results” on immigrants, including naturalized citizens and Green Card holders, sparking privacy concerns about the scope and use of the information, as well as the efficacy and storage practicalities of the practice.

The DHS will start gathering this information on October 18.     

We get the latest, as well as debate the ethics and efficacy of this new data collection practice.

How will all this data be stored and parsed? Is this an invasion of privacy? Should naturalized citizens and Green Card holders be swept under the scope of this practice? Or is this an effective tool that could protect the U.S.?


Lily Hay Newman, security staff writer at Wired who’s been following this story; she tweets @lilyhnewman

Adam Schwartz, senior staff attorney with the Electronic Frontiers Foundation, an advocacy group for civil liberties in the digital realm

Art Arthur, resident fellow in law and policy at the Center for Immigration Studies