Don’t use social media for background checks: watchdog

British Columbia’s privacy watchdog says social media should not be used to help organizations make background checks.

VICTORIA — British Columbia’s privacy watchdog says social media should not be used to help organizations make background checks.

Elizabeth Denham says using Facebook, Twitter and other sites to do the checks presents legal and other challenges.

The issue came to Denham’s attention earlier this year when leadership candidates for the provincial New Democrats were asked to supply their login information so the party could check for possible embarrassing photos or postings.

The party told Denham it asked for Facebook passwords after an NDP candidate had to withdraw from the 2009 election because controversial pictures of himself were shown in the media.