July 13, 2012

Facebook scans conversations for criminal activity

7-13-2012 Global:

Facebook is scanning users' chats and posts for possible criminal activity, a report from Reuters shows.

The social network's Chief Security Officer Joe Sullivan told the news agency that Facebook monitors conversations for words and phrases that suggest potential criminal activity, as well as the exchange of personal information between users with a wide age gap.

Conversations between users who do not have a well-established history of chatting are more closely watched than others. Facebook's software also searches for words often found in the chat records of convicted criminals, including sex offenders, who used social media to find their victims.

If criminal activity is suspected, Facebook officials notify law enforcement.

The nearly 1 billion member social network has indicated in the past that they work with law enforcement officials when the safety of their users is at risk.

Detectives at law enforcement agencies in Central Florida, including the Orange County Sheriff's Office and Orlando Police Department, often scan through suspects' social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter for criminal activity.

YouTube is often monitored by these agencies. In the past, agencies have captured gang members who posted short videos of their gang activity. ..Source.. by Orlando Sentinel

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