WASHINGTON D.C. (CelebrityAccess) — In a move that will impose new xenophobic requirements on international artists looking to tour in the U.S., the Trump administration is now requiring visa seekers to provide personal details about their social media activities.
The new rules, which were first announced in March 2018, are part of the U.S. government’s expanded “heightened vetting” process for all immigrants and visitors.
According to the Associated Press, the U.S. State Department has updated its immigrant and nonimmigrant visa forms to require five years worth of social media user names, telephone numbers, international travel activities, and deportation history.
“National security is our top priority when adjudicating visa applications, and every prospective traveler and immigrant to the United States undergoes extensive security screening. We are constantly working to find mechanisms to improve our screening processes to protect U.S. citizens, while supporting legitimate travel to the United States,” a statement from the U.S. State Department said.
In addition, visitors seeking visas will also be asked to provide past email addresses and phone numbers as well as details about their interaction with non-American internet services such as China’s TenCent, QQ, and Sina Weibo.
The State Department said in a statement the new requirements are aimed at improving the vetting process to protect national security.
The changes went into effect on June 1st, the State Department said.