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The FBI plans secret monitoring of social networks’ users

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is looking for private contracting companies that can collect and transfer huge amounts of data from users of social networks such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to law enforcement agencies.

This is stated in the application for the tender, reports Daily Caller.

It is noted that the FBI began a search in July. The document states that the US government needs “access to all real-time social media sharing” in order to better deal with terrorists and internal threats.

“That data can be collected while ensuring all privacy and civil liberties compliance requirements are met”, — FBI says in the contract opportunity.

To do this, the bureau is looking for providers who will warn law enforcement agencies in advance about the preparation of possible incidents of violence, and if necessary, will be able to disclose user identification numbers on social networks, their IP addresses and phone numbers.

This is not the first time the FBI has held such a tender. So, in 2016, the agency hired Dataminr, a company for analyzing social networks, to search for information in almost real-time mode and by given filters across Twitter. At the same time, it is noted that the company works with open data.

Human rights activists have already noted that within the framework of such a contract, personal boundaries can be easily violated. They also believe that migrants, etnical communities and activists can be seriously affected. Daily Caller points out that Twitter and Facebook’s developer policies prohibit third-party information sharing.

“Over the past several months, we have taken enforcement action against developers who created and marketed tools meant for surveillance, in violation of our existing policies; we want to be sure everyone understands the underlying policy and how to comply”, — a post on the company‘s U.S. public policy Facebook page reads.

At the same time, recent actions of the American Congress and various agencies fighting to raise the standards of confidentiality of personal data may complicate FBI activity. In particular, an example can leak of information that was collected and used by a third party and resulted in record-high fine of 5 billion dollars imposed in July for Facebook is connected.

About Sophia Zimmerman

High-quality tech & computer security copywriter, SEO editor & online marketing consultant

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