John Haltiwanger on Fri, 8 Jan 2010 12:28:28 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> CIA Buys Stake in Firm that Monitors Social Networking Sites

In case anyone has missed it:

"Twitterati and other netizens should already know that their Internet
musings are public and could potentially become fodder for
intelligence analysts. But now U.S. spy agencies have officially
invested in a software firm that monitors social media and half a
million web 2.0 sites daily.

Wired has the breakdown on the recent investment move by In-Q-Tel, the
investment arm of the CIA and other intelligence agencies. That cash
is slated for Visible Technologies, a software firm that is helping
Microsoft monitor Internet buzz surrounding Windows 7 and tracking
online campaigns launched by animal activists against food
manufacturer Hormel."

Not that it is surprising, really, considering Facebook's history. For
a decent exposition on the relationship between Facebook and In-Q-Tel
(CIA-backed venture capital investment firm), check out

Also of note, the EFF has a pending Freedom of Information Act
requesting for social network monitoring from the Department of
Defense, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Homeland
Security, the Department of Justice, the Department of Treasury, and
the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

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