Social Media Surveillance

The data generated through peoples' use of social media becomes valuable intelligence to others, who want to monitor, profile, and manipulate.

13 Nov 2020
While traditional media sought to criminalize the widespread November 2020 protests in Peru following the Congressional ouster of President Vizcarra, witnesses disseminated videos and photographs of police abuse on social networks. In the fear and uncertainty, many myths also circulated. In Peru
22 Oct 2019
As police began treating every 2019 Hong Kong protest as an illegal assembly attracting sentences of up to ten years in jail, facial recognition offered increased risk of being on the streets, as protesters could be identified and arrested later even if they were in too large a crowd to be picked up
19 Nov 2020
On November 9, 2020, after a year of escalating tensions, Peruvian president Martín Vizcarra was impeached on the grounds of "moral incapacity" by lawmakers threatened by his anti-corruption investigations and the policy reform he led. The street protests that followed all over the country were
22 Apr 2021
Protesters in Tunisia have faced hate messages, threats, and other types of harassment on social media, and been arrested when they complain to police. Arrests and prosecutions based on Facebook posts are becoming more frequent, and in street protests law enforcement appears to target LGBTQ
23 Mar 2021
As the long Minnesota winter came to an end in March 2021, both protesters and police began preparing for the beginning of tunneling work to build the Enbridge Line 3 pipeline. Intended to update the decaying previous structure and double its capacity. Police practiced a variety of crowd control
05 May 2021
Documents acquired under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 reveal that staff and student protests against cuts at the University of Sydney were surveilled by both the university administration and police, who have been widely criticised for using excessive force at education
09 Jul 2020
Despite having promised in 2016 not to facilitate domestic surveillance, the AI startup Dataminr used its firehose access to Twitter to alert law enforcement to social media posts with the latest whereabouts and actions of demonstrators involved in the protests following the killing of George Floyd
19 May 2020
Researchers are scraping social media posts for images of mask-covered faces to use to improve facial recognition algorithms. In April, researchers published to Github the COVID19 Mask Image Dataset, which contains more than 1,200 images taken from Instagram; in March, Wuhan researchers compiled the
03 May 2020
The state of Utah gave the AI company Banjo real time access to state traffic cameras, CCTV, and public safety cameras, 911 emergency systems, location data for state-owned vehicles, and other data that the company says it's combining with information collected from social media, satellites, and
28 Apr 2020
The Israeli company Cellebrite, best known for providing hacking software to help law enforcement agencies get inside suspects' iPhones, is now pitching its technology to help authorities pull the location data and contacts off the phones of newly-diagnosed COVID-19 patients in order to "quarantine
09 Apr 2020
The risk detection company Dataminr has created an AI system that analyses social media posts to predict the next hotspots for COVID-19 outbreaks. The company claims it successfully predicted spikes seven to 13 days before they occurred - in the UK, in London, Hertfordshire, Essex, and Kent, and in
26 Mar 2020
The consumer and market trends insight company StatSocial announced Crisis Insights, which it claims tracks rapidly changing consumer audience dynamics to help US brands and CMOs respond effectively to the ongoing coronavirus epidemic and economic slowdown. StatSocial's Silhouette social data
20 Mar 2020
To counter the many rumours, fake news, and hoaxes spreading in Myanmar, the country's Ministry of Health and Sports launched a website in collaboration with state and regional governments with videos about the virus, the latest data, and updates on the latest number of cases and lab results in
A 17-year-old Palestinian resident of Lebanon, Ismail B. Ajjawi, was deported shortly after he arrived at Boston Airport, where he was due to start attending Harvard University the following week. Immigration officers subjected him to hours of questioning — at one point leaving to search his phone
In February 2019, after investigative journalists used social media posts to investigate the country's hidden role in conflicts such as those in Ukraine and Syria, Russia began moving to ban its soldiers from posting any information that would expose their whereabouts or their role in the military
In October 2018, in response to questions from a committee of MPs, the UK-based Student Loans Company defended its practice of using "public" sources such as Facebook posts and other social media activity as part of the process of approving loans. In one case earlier in the year, a student was told