The Department of State (“DOS”) recently added a question to the Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form DS-160 and Immigrant Visa Application Form DS-260, asking applicants to disclose the social media platforms that they have used in the last five years preceding their visa application. An affirmative response to having used one of these social media platforms in the last five years will prompt the visa applicant to disclose his or her social media identifier or username for each platform. Visa applicants are required to answer this question on the forms as there is no option to refuse to answer.
Because failure to fully disclose information on a visa application could be grounds for misrepresentation, visa applicants should be forthcoming with their social media presence. Choosing “none” as an untruthful response could lead to potential denial of a visa for misrepresentation and future bars of admissibility with associated personal and business consequences. The list of designated social media platforms includes 20 platforms:
- Sina Weibo
- Tencent Weibo
Given that the DOS may access and review social media profiles and misunderstand posted content, visa applicants should exercise good judgement when sharing information on social media sites. Please contact SPS Immigration should you have questions on how this might impact your immigration case.