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Posts tagged ‘Federal Bureau of Investigation’

Records Reveal FBI Paid Best Buy Geek Squad As Informants

EFF filed a lawsuit against the Department of Justice in May 2017 seeking records about the FBI’s training and use of Best Buy Geek Squad employees to conduct warrantless searches of customers’ computers.

A federal prosecution of a doctor in California revealed that the FBI has been working for several years to cultivate informants in Best Buy’s national repair facility in Brooks, Kentucky, including reportedly paying eight Geek Squad employees as informants.

EFF sent a FOIA request to the FBI in February 2017 seeking agency records about the use of informants, training of Best Buy personnel in the detection and location of child pornography on computers, and policy statements about using informants at computer repair facilities.The FBI denied the request, saying it doesn’t confirm or deny that it has records that would reveal whether a person or organization is under investigation. A suit  was filed after the Department of Justice failed to respond to our administrative appeal of the FBI’s initial denial.

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Cloud Computing Security and Privacy

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The Question:  Should  the  authorities  be allowed to use unlawful measures, such as hacking, in order to apprehend those who are doing so for financial gain?

We hear stories of Silk Road being shut down and the F.B.I arresting  Ross Ulbricht as a result of unlawful activity. Silk Road was able to exist and function through the use of ‘darknet’ and ‘Tor’. Darknet uses peer-to-peer networks in order to remain anonymous, and Tor (aka The Onion Router) uses separate servers in order to disguise users online presence and location.

The paper trail that would normally accumulate during sales of over $1.2 billion to a million customers was hidden by the use of a virtual currency system called ‘bitcoin’. Bitcoin covered the financial tracks that are often left by credit card use online. The FBI discovered the six servers hidden in various locations around the world. These servers provided the data that exposed transactions, enabled the site to be shutdown, as well as the arrest of Ulbricht.

 

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