Homeland Security Searches Your Facebook For Marijuana

Homeland Security marijuana.jpg
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
I don’t feel like a terrorist just because I smoke weed. Do you?

​ You knew it would come to this, right? Lest you think those hard-working goons at the Department of Homeland Security are slacking in their jobs—you know, spying on your everyday activities—it has been revealed that the domestic surveillance agency has been scouring your online postings for, among other things, the word “marijuana.”

Homeland Security personnel regularly monitor updates on social networks, including Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, to uncover “Items Of Interest” (IOI), according to an internal DHS memo released by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), reports Animal New York.
That baseline list of terms for which the DHS searches—or at least a DHS subcontractor hired to monitor social networks—reveals which specific words generate realtime IOI reports.

HomelandSecurityWords.jpg
Animal New York
​ ​The term “marijuana” is supposedly included because of drug cartel violence south of the border in Mexico. Interestingly, “cannabis” isn’t on the furnished list, but my bet is that it will be very soon.
Although the released PDF is almost all reader-selectable text, the list of terms of curiously embedded as an image of text, preventing simple indexing. Animal New York fixed that problem by running the entire list themselves (see the entire list at the end of this article).
The DHS has an internal privacy policy, and in a weak attempt to follow what few privacy rules remain, they supposedly try to strip your Personally Identifiable Information (PII) out of the aggregated tweets and Facebook status updates. But this policy has some broad exceptions:
1) U.S. and foreign individuals in extremis situations involving potential life or death circumstances; (this is no change)
2) Senior U.S. and foreign government officials who make public statements or provide public updates;
3) U.S. and foreign government spokespersons who make public statements or provide public updates;
4) U.S. and foreign private sector officials and spokespersons who make public statements or provide public updates;
5) Names of anchors, newscasters, or on-scene reporters who are known or identified as reporters in their post or article or who use traditional and/or social media in real time to keep their audience situationally aware and informed;
6) Current and former public officials who are victims of incidents or activities related to Homeland Security; and
7) Terrorists, drug cartel leaders or other persons known to have been involved in major crimes of Homeland Security interest, (e.g., mass shooters such as those at Virginia Tech or Ft. Hood) who are killed or found dead.
The Media Monitoring Capability team can transmit personal information to the DHS National Operations Center over the phone as deemed necessary.
In addition to the following list of “suspicious” terms, the DHS can also add additional trigger terms circumstantially, “as deemed necessary.” So basically, they can spy on you for any reason, or for no reason at all.
Looking at the list below, it’s interesting to note that the Department of Homeland Security searches social media for—wait for it—the term “social media.” Geniuses they are, I say! Geniuses!
Don’t you feel safer now?
DHS Media Monitoring Terms

2.13 Key Words & Search Terms

This is a current list of terms that will be used by the NOC when monitoring social media sites to provide situational awareness and establish a common operating picture. As natural or manmade disasters occur, new search terms may be added.

The new search terms will not use PII in searching for relevantmission-related information.

DHS & Other Agencies

Department of Homeland Security (DHS)Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)Coast Guard (USCG)Customs and Border Protection (CBP)Border PatrolSecret Service (USSS)National Operations Center (NOC)Homeland DefenseImmigration Customs Enforcement (ICE)AgentTask ForceCentral Intelligence Agency (CIA)Fusion CenterDrug Enforcement Agency (DEA)Secure Border Initiative (SBI)Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF)U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS)Federal Air Marshal Service (FAMS)Transportation Security Administration (TSA)Air MarshalFederal Aviation Administration (FAA)National GuardRed CrossUnited Nations (UN)

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Comment by 14300 on June 20, 2013 at 7:12am

Good Info - thanks for sharing!  8-P

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