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EFF Wants To Know If the Feds Are Cyberstalking 135

rossendryv writes "The Electronic Frontier Foundation and UC Berkeley's Samuelson Center filed suit in California's Northern District, asking the court to force a number of government agencies to hand over any documents they have concerning the use of social networking sites as part of investigative procedures."
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EFF Wants To Know If the Feds Are Cyberstalking

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @08:24PM (#30305740)

    I had a facebook account, but I regained my privacy by killing everyone on my friends list, the closing the account.
    Shit was so cash.

  • by Ransak ( 548582 ) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @08:28PM (#30305790) Homepage Journal
    The summary is misleading. The suit is more about what the Feds are doing with that data and the policies surrounding it, not that the Feds are using social networking sites for investigations.
  • by CannonballHead ( 842625 ) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @08:31PM (#30305836)

    Hence a warning to those of you looking for a job: beware what you post online

    Or in newspapers, magazines, bridges, overpasses...

    I would have thought this would be common-sense. If you want to keep something private, don't tell everyone about it :)

  • prove it! (Score:2, Informative)

    by anarking ( 34854 ) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @08:44PM (#30305932) Homepage

    there was a story recently of police busting someone for underage drinking based on facebook pictures. the problem with arresting someone based not on catching them doing an illegal act, but by heresay or pictures... is that how can it be proven?! "that was apple juice" "i was being facetious" shouldn't those be the only needs of defense against such allegations, true or not? this is the inherant flaw i see in this policing method.

  • by Mikkeles ( 698461 ) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @08:56PM (#30306070)

    If you want to keep something private, don't tell ANYone about it

    Emphasised that for you ;^)

  • by AHuxley ( 892839 ) on Wednesday December 02, 2009 @10:57PM (#30306948) Journal
    http://wikileaks.org/wiki/EU_social_network_spy_system_brief%2C_INDECT_Work_Package_4%2C_2009 [wikileaks.org]
    They get you, the words/terms/jargon you use, your friends and friends of friends.
    Then they track you all and sort your interests.
    When you have something real to do, never do it online ;)
  • by tlhIngan ( 30335 ) <slashdot@w o r f . n et> on Thursday December 03, 2009 @01:35AM (#30307776)

    You're joking, right? I'm pretty sure it's very different, if I set facebook to let only my friends see my stuff. I never saw a friend request from the FBI, so why should they be allowed to probe my facebook stuff? That seems like a digital analogue to the feds just storming someone's house without first getting the owner's permission to enter the home.

    In other words, they better have a darn good reason and a written warrant with that reason if they want to see my facebook without first being my facebook friend.

    On any site, even if it's marked "private", once it's posted, it's public. Those privacy settings are probably a lot shallower than you think, and "friends only" can include a lot more. For example, didn't some group release a quiz that revealed that it not only had access to your complete profile, but the profiles of your friends?

    And what about that Manulife case where an insurance recipient was denied after posting pics to their "private" profile?

    Truth is, your profile may be marked as private, but it may be more public than you expect. All it would take is someone finding a vulnerability in facebook that unlocks private pfofiles. Or just do a quiz or app that one of your friends do that'll scrape your profile. Or maybe one of your friends is a friend of the FBI and is re-posting your pics?

    "Private" means zip. It may imply that only your friends can see stuff in your profile, but it's effectively public.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 03, 2009 @04:33AM (#30308388)


    Beats me, but you are in clear violation of the Facebook terms of service you signed. I hope they kick your account.

  • Investigative style (Score:3, Informative)

    by realsilly ( 186931 ) on Thursday December 03, 2009 @09:02AM (#30309346)

    Social Networking sites are the type of tool that the govt. agencies have wanted for years now. It helps them with their investigations into cells of criminal activity. Consider how say the mob works. Vinny the Boss, hires Joe Schmo to do his job but uses cash at a drop zone. Well Joe has to have had some way of knowing to take the job from Vinny. So a Social networking site like application help piece Vinny and Joe to the same coffee shop that they frequent. Now think of the limitless potential power of investigation that can be performed. All legal, the info is public, so no warrants are necessary, the cells of criminals are oblivious as to how they are nabbed.

Evolution is a million line computer program falling into place by accident.