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Gun Owners Would Have Social Media, Internet History Searched Under NY Bill

November 24, 2018 - 4:19 pm
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NEW YORK (AP) -- A state lawmaker is proposing a change to New York's gun laws to allow authorities to search social media for potential red flags before approving a handgun license.

State Senator Kevin Parker's bill would mandate that pistol permit applicants provide investigators with their Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter and Instagram passwords and access to their Google, Yahoo and Bing searches.

The Brooklyn Democrat wants investigators to look at the last three years of an applicant's social media postings and a year of their search histories for "any good cause for the denial of a license,'' such as racial slurs, threats of violence and terrorism-related posts.

The review of applicants' social media history would go back three years, while the review of applicants' internet search history would go back one year. 

The bill, submitted on Nov. 14, appeared to come in response to recent mass shootings whose suspects had posted threats or ranted about potential targets.

No vote has been scheduled.