Due to a lawsuit involving the Freedom of Information Act, it has been revealed that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has a number of agents whose work consists of surfing the Internet–with the majority of their time being spent on Facebook or Twitter.

Many of the FBI agents will send a Friend Request that anyone might accept.  The agents look on the pages of their new “friends” to look at the information you have posted and your pictures for anything related to a suspect the FBI or another agency could be investigating.

The information obtained because of agents’ use of the internet could be used for the prosecution and conviction of defendants.  I would assume this is so because since you willingly accepted an agent’s friend request, you willingly gave up all of your information and your pictures that are posted on your page.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a San Francisco-based civil liberties group, received the 33-page document giving an outline of online activity while it was suing six federal agencies in court.

Since agents are going undercover, local and state police departments coordinate their online profile investigations with the federal agencies so their cases and investigations do not overlap.  This is a stark reminder back to about ten years ago when police agencies across the country began to log on to chat rooms attempting to find sexual predators.

Keep in mind, the federal government cannot just go to a social networking site such as Facebook or Twitter and demand that the requested information be released.  To do so requires a search warrant, which are only allowed when the information on a page in known to be incriminating or vital to an investigation.

Honestly, I don’t have much of a problem with this–no citizen who follows the laws laid out by our government should.

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