Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber recently signed into law H.B. 2654, which prohibits employers from requesting passwords from employees or applicants, requiring that they add the employer to a social media contact list, or disciplining or failing to hire employees or applicants because they refused to provide access to their personal social media account. Employers are also prohibited from requiring that individuals access a personal social media account in the presence of the employer, unless as part of an investigation to ensure compliance with laws, regulations or employer policies where the employer has specific information about activity on the employee’s account. Employers may require an employee to disclose log-in information to an account provided or used by or on behalf of the employer. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2014.

TIP: More states are regulating employer access to employee social media accounts, as we have previously reported. Employers should refrain from asking employees and applicants for log-in information to personal social media accounts and should consult with counsel before drafting social media policies.