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Tag: facebook

Facebook, Twitter Support Apple’s phone encryption battle with FBI

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Social media giants Facebook and Twitter are siding with Apple’s fight against the FBI’s attempt to weaken encryption.

“We condemn terrorism and have total solidarity with victims of terror. Those who seek to praise, promote, or plan terrorist acts have no place on our services,” Facebook said in a statement Thursday.

“However, we will continue to fight aggressively against requirements for companies to weaken the security of their systems. These demands would create a chilling precedent and obstruct companies’ efforts to secure their products.”

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted: We stand with @timcook and Apple (and thank him for his leadership)!”

The comments come after a federal magistrate ordered Apple to make it easier to crack the iPhone’s password. The FBI has been unable to access an iPhone 5c that belonged to one of the San Bernardino killer.

Technology companies are worried about setting a legal precedent to allow the government to using hacking tools to access private information.

The FBI argues that the uncrackable encryption is thwarting its fight against terrorism.

FBI Abandons Plans to Require ‘Backdoors’ on All Consumer Tecnhology

IPhone 6By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI has backed off plans to require all consumer technology to have a so-called backdoor so that law enforcement can spy on suspects, the Business Insider reports. 

On Wednesday, FBI general counsel James Baker said the bureau has abandoned the “magical thinking” that consumer technology will be outfitted with backdoor access.

“It’s tempting to try to engage in magical thinking and hope that the amazing technology sector we have in the United States can come up with some solution,” Baker said. “Maybe that’s just a bridge too far. Maybe that is scientifically and mathematically not possible.”

The FBI persistence on the issue caused strained relationships with tech companies, like Apply, Google and Facebook, all of whom were worried about privacy rights and a backdoor for hackers.

Facebook Posts Lead FBI to Florida Man Accused of Planning to Detonate Nail Bomb

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI has arrested an alleged ISIS sympathizer who investigators say planned to detonate a nail-rigged backpack bomb on a Florida beach, the Guardian reports. 

Prosecutors charged 23-year-old Harlem Suarez of Key West with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction in the U.S.

Suarez attracted authorities because of provocative Facebook posts supporting ISIS.

“Be a warrior, learn how to cut your enemies head and then burn down the body learn how to be the new future of the world Caliphate,” Suarez allegedly posted.

Suarez appeared in a Miami court for the first time Tuesday and was held without bail.

Justice Department to Pay $134,000 to Woman After DEA Set Up Bogus Facebook Page

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A controversial tactic by federal investigators from the DEA to create a bogus Facebook page using real information from a suspect has turned into a $134,000 settlement for the woman targeted on the social media page, the Associated Press reports.

In the settlement with Sondra Arquiett, the DEA still did not admit wrongdoing.

The case has prompted the Justice Department to review how it handled the case and whether it was appropriate to set up a fake account.

“This settlement demonstrates that the government is mindful of its obligation to ensure the rights of third parties are not infringed upon in the course of its efforts to bring those who commit federal crimes to justice,” Richard Hartunian, the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of New York, said in a statement.

“It also takes into account emerging personal privacy concerns in the age of social media, and represents a fair resolution of plaintiff’s claims,” he added.

FBI, Facebook Partner to Issue Amber Alerts to Social Media Users

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A lot more people are going to learn about missing children after the Justice Department created a partnership with Facebook to send AMBER alerts to its users, WJCL reports. 

A similar deal was reached with Bing.

Attorney General Eric Holder said this is a big step to finding more children before it’s too late.

“Protecting the well-being of our young people is a responsibility that falls to every American,” Holder said.  “Each of us can help by paying close attention to alerts that come in – and by making sure you are plugged into the AMBER Alert network via social media.  Remember: finding an abducted child and returning him or her to safety depends on a fast response.  The more vigilant citizens we have on the look-out, the better our chances of a quick recovery.”

The complete text of Holder’s message:

“At the Department of Justice, we are committed to ensuring the safety and security of everyone in this country – and especially our young people.  Over the last two decades, a key tool in this effort has been the AMBER Alert system – an early warning system that helps us find and return abducted children.”

“Since the first AMBER Alert system became operational in 1996, AMBER Alert’s strong network of law enforcement and transportation officials, broadcasters, private-sector representatives – and dedicated ordinary citizens – has helped to rescue and safely return more than 700 abducted children.  Just last month, two young children were recovered.  In one incident, a three-year-old boy who had been taken in a domestic dispute was used as a shield by his abductor.  In another, an infant just 20 days old was abducted by a carjacker.  Fortunately, with the help of the AMBER Alert system, both children were rescued unharmed.”

“Through radio announcements, highway signs, wireless notifications, and Web posts, AMBER Alerts are now capable of rapidly reaching millions of people across the country.  But we have a great deal more to do in order to ensure that we can spread the word about missing children as quickly and as widely as possible.”

“Today – as our nation observes National AMBER Alert Awareness Day – I am pleased to announce that we are making two vital additions to our innovative national partnerships in order to expand the reach of the AMBER Alert system.  Facebook, already an AMBER Alert partner, will now begin sending alerts, along with detailed information and photographs, to its members in designated search areas.  And the search engine Bing will begin allowing users to access AMBER Alerts through its online tools.  These cutting-edge tools are available as a result of agreements with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which coordinates our AMBER Alert distribution efforts.”

“Facebook’s geo-targeted alerts and Bing’s online broadcast tools will give AMBER Alerts an expanded social media and Internet presence – extending our web of child protection resources into new and critical areas.  I am grateful for their involvement, and for the participation of so many organizations and agencies that have helped to make the AMBER Alert system such an important public safety asset.  And I urge other companies and organizations to step forward and do their part by offering whatever assistance they can provide.”

“Protecting the well-being of our young people is a responsibility that falls to every American.  Each of us can help by paying close attention to alerts that come in – and by making sure you are plugged into the AMBER Alert network via social media.  Remember: finding an abducted child and returning him or her to safety depends on a fast response.  The more vigilant citizens we have on the look-out, the better our chances of a quick recovery.”

At Least 7 Arrested for Threatening NYPD Police Following Shooting of 2 Officers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Authorities have arrested at least seven people for allegedly threatening police after a man shot two NYPD officers in the head Saturday in retaliation for the recent deaths of black men at the hands of white cops, CNN reports.

Police have been encouraging the public to report all threats so law enforcement can assess the dangers. As a result, seven arrests were made.

“All threats against members of the NYPD are taken seriously and are investigated immediately to determine the credibility and origin of the information,” NYPD said in a statement.

One recent arrest included a 26-year-old who is accused of threatening officers while posting pictures of weapons on his Facebook page. He has been charged with making terroristic threats, CNN reported.

Another suspect, a 41-year-old man, was arrested after he allegedly called police to inquire whether the bullets had been removed from the dead officer’s head so “he could kill more cops.”

In a tweet Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio thanked the police department and the civilian who saw something and said something: “Thank you to the NYPD officers who today arrested a man who threatened to kill cops, and to the good samaritan who provided key information.”

Navy Veteran Fired for Posting Photos of Homeland Security Cars on Facebook

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Navy veteran who posted photos to Facebook of Homeland Security vehicles arriving near Ferguson was fired from his job and accused of being a terrorist, CNN reports.

Mark Paffrath worked for the Drury hotel chain where the federal vehicles were amassing in a parking lot when he snapped the photos.

Paffrath said his boss was furious.

“The head of security for Drury was in there, and he pretty much called me a terrorist, saying that I dishonorably served my country for posting those pictures and videos on Facebook,” Paffrath said.

Paffrath said he can’t understand what he did wrong.

“You know, it surprised me, and I was rather shocked that they were there. So I took a short video and a picture of the vehicles. I didn’t give any location out,” he said.

Paffrath, who was born and raised in Ferguson, posted along with the images: “Why are all these vehicles here, I wonder if it has anything to do with Ferguson? #Ferguson, #No justice, no peace.”

He was fired on Saturday, two days after posting the photos.

Other Stories of Interest

Facebook to DEA: Setting Up Fake Accounts to Capture Suspects Violates Policies

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA’s decision to set up a fake account on Facebook by stealing a woman’s identity was a “knowing and serious breach” of the social networks’ terms and policies, the company wrote in a letter to the DEA.

Gizmodo reports that Facebook will enforce its policy of users creating accounts under proper names.

Facebook “has long made clear that law enforcement agencies are subject to these policies.”

Despite that policy, the FBI created a fake account using the stolen identity of Sondra Arquiett, who had been arrested on suspicion of being in a drug ring. The idea was to catch others in the ring by using the account.