The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) was blocked by members of the U.S. House of Representatives. CISPA would have banned employers from asking for social media passwords of its employees.
The bill would help the government react to cybersecurity threats by making it easier to share information between itself and private company. Some argue that it’s a major invasion of privacy as it would be easy for companies to hand over users’ private information to the government. More background on CISPA can be found with this excellent post on PC Mag.
The Washington state legislature currently has SB 5211 which proposes employer social media password legislation. There is criticism about whether this legislation is necessary. But, the law, if passed, would prevent employers from obtaining social media passwords from its employees. It also would allow a statutory cause of action with a penalty of $500 to a prevailing employee or prospective employee in addition to “any award of actual damages” plus reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs. Additions to the state law include limited reasons for an employer to access a personal account or profile.
The bill is currently matriculating its way through the state House.