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Facebook logins still in limbo: Congress doesn't help FCC protect online privacy

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An amendment to the FCC Process Reform Act was voted down in the House. The amendment would have prevented anything in the Act from hindering the FCC from adopting new rules to protect workers against requests for their Facebook passwords.

myob stock 1020
myob stock 1020

An amendment to the FCC Process Reform Act seeking to bolster the agency's ability to protect workers' Facebook logins from nosy employers was shot down earlier this week. However, Congress's failure to pass the amendment isn't really a setback for online privacy — the Democrat-controlled Senate has expressed little interest in considering the Act, and the Obama administration has voiced its intention to veto it, meaning the amendment was a lost cause anyway. The addition was proposed by Democratic Congressman Ed Perlmutter, who argued that, armed with their employees' logins "employers essentially can act as imposters and assume the identity of an employee and continually access, monitor and even manipulate an employee’s personal social activities and opinions."

While the amendment not getting passed doesn't exactly amount to a setback, the battle to protect workers' online privacy from nosy employers is far from over. Senators have been busy drafting bills to outlaw Facebook login requests, and lobbying the Attorney General to consider if the practice violates existing legislation. Facebook itself has also come out against the practice, calling it "alarming," warning employers that it exposes them to legal risks.