We have written in the past that an individual’s online activity on various social media outlets can dramatically impact their immigration proceedings. Primarily, the concern has been centered on those whose activity seems to contradict their stated purpose. Many people don’t seem to realize that the USCIS has been monitoring social media to uncover possible instances of immigration fraud since 2010.

Why is the USCIS monitoring your accounts?

While uncovering and preventing terroristic acts remain a priority, the USCIS also focuses on all forms of immigration fraud. By monitoring social media such as Facebook and Twitter and professional networking sites such as LinkedIn, the government can compare an applicant’s interview and document responses to what has been shared online. Of particular interest, are the activities of K-1 visa holders.

Why are K-1 visa holders in danger?

Those in the United States with a K-1 visa live precariously. Those holding a K-1 are generally seeking a green card through marriage to a U.S. citizen. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for the government to suspect that these are invalid relationships – created simply to procure the green card. Posts on social media can strengthen that suspicion.

Take, for example, a young woman engaged to a U.S. citizen. She continues to make posts featuring her male friends from her country of origin – parties and vacations in intimate settings. There are hardly any references to her husband-to-be. While these omissions might be harmless oversights – perhaps the fiancée actively avoids a social media presence – the USCIS will take them seriously.

What can be done?

Be honest. With the volume of paperwork, documentation, interviews and investigations the USCIS is a thorough government entity. While there might be an innocuous answer for inconsistencies, they will note any contradictory information – potentially voiding your paperwork and beginning removal proceedings. You need an experienced immigration attorney on your side to provide guidance and help you prevent any unnecessary governmental concern.