As if getting into the United States wasn’t already an ordeal, the American government is now asking you would-be travelers for even more identifying information: namely, the details of your social media accounts.
Thanks to this Tuesday’s amendment to the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), citizens of Australia and 37 other countries eligible for the Visa Waiver Program are now being asked to list which social media platforms they use, and what usernames they operate under.
Those planning to visit the States for fewer than 90 days without applying for a fully-fledged visa will find the ESTA form now asks for Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter handles, among others:
The first point of contention: even if the new section does specify that answering is optional, it seems pretty sneaky to ask for that info on a form where other identifying details are required.
Furthermore, it’s not immediately clear how or where that information will be stored, or what security protections it’ll be under. The fear is that some schmuck could conceivably wave you through the gates on your way to Miami, before stalking your Insta for the duration of your stay.