by John Herrington
Connecticut employers need to prepare for a new law taking effect October 1 limiting how they can access social media accounts belonging to employees and applicants.
The new law prohibits an employer from:
- Requesting or requiring employees or applicants to provide a username, password, or any other authentication means for accessing a personal online account;
- Requesting or requiring employees or applicants to authenticate or access a personal online account in the presence of the employer;
- Requiring employees or applicants to invite the employer or to accept an invitation from the employer to join a group affiliated with a personal online account;
- Discharging, disciplining, discriminating against, retaliating against, or otherwise penalizing employees who refuse to provide the means to access a personal online account; or
- Failing or refusing to hire applicants based on their refusal to provide access to a personal online account.
The law doesn’t prohibit an employer from requesting or requiring access to an online account or service provided by the employer for business purposes. Also, the law allows employers to fire, discipline, or penalize an employee who transfers proprietary, confidential, or financial information via a personal online account.
For more information on Connecticut’s new social media law, see the June issue of Connecticut Employment Law Letter.