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Assembly takes up social media privacy bill Tuesday

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Workers and job applicants would not have to worry about their superiors snooping into their Facebook accounts, under a bill that's up in the Assembly Tuesday.  

The lower house will consider prohibiting companies, landlords, and colleges from asking their people to give them the passwords for their social media accounts.  

The Senate unanimously approved the measure last November. Governor Scott Walker says he'll sign it if it gets to his desk.

Some companies have said they need to enter their employees' private accounts to make sure they're not giving out trade secrets or other proprietary information. Others call it an invasion of privacy.  

Assembly Democrat Melissa Sargent of Madison said she's heard from job applicants who fear being snubbed if they don't give up their data. Privacy advocates say colleges are forcing student athletes to give their personal passwords to school officials in the name of preventing NCAA violations.

Employers can still check what their workers post publicly on social media -- plus any communications from company or school owned computers.  

The bill also lets them investigate when employees send proprietary data to places where the government already bans snooping -- including personal e-mail accounts.  

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)