Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Court Puts Facebook Search Warrants Under Spotlight

During a probe of massive fraud in 9/11 benefits, Facebook took a stand for user privacy in objecting to bulk electronic search warrants, an attorney for the social-networking giant told New York’s high court Tuesday.

The oral arguments come four years after the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office sent Facebook 381 search warrants targeting the accounts of some of the New York City police officers and firefighters who took early retirement after 9/11, claiming mental trauma.

Investigators wanted to see if the same individuals claiming to be disabled painted a different story on their social media, and a Manhattan judge ultimately ordered Facebook to comply with the warrants. Prosecution of the benefits scheme by Vance’s office ultimately snared more than 130 individuals, 62 of whom were among the targeted Facebook users.

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