Documents that have been shared with the ProPublica website show that immigration officials have been told to vet refugees’ social media posts using Google Translate.
Many experts, even Google itself say that you should observe caution when using Google Translate for complex tasks. Google advises users that its machine translation service is not “intended to replace human translators.”
An internal manual produced by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the federal agency charged with admitting immigrants, instructs officers who sift through non-English social media posts of refugees that “the most efficient approach to translate foreign language contents is to utilize one of the many free online language translation services provided by Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines.” The manual includes step-by-step instructions for Google Translate.