Facebook, presently known as Meta, cautioned the LAPD that its announced act of setting up fake accounts to surveil users and collect their data on its platforms violates the company’s terms and policies.
In an order to shut everything down to police chief Michel Moore last week, lawyers requested that the office quit making “fake (or dummy) Facebook accounts” to “impersonate legitimate users.”
The missive came after inside records acquired by New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice in September showed the LAPD urged cops to collect social media account information from suspects and create a “Fictitious Online Persona” to keep an eye on them.
The department also partnered with a third-party network that analyzes social media information to unlock connections between users, according to the documents.
The NYU Law School Institute said the training is unlawful as the informal organization advised the LAPD for encroaching on its users “First Amendment protected activities.”
Our authenticity policies are expected to establish a protected climate where individuals can trust and consider each other responsible, Meta Vice President and Deputy General Counsel Roy Austin Jr composed.
“Operating fake accounts violates the terms and approaches that administer the Facebook service, and sabotages trust in our community. ”
The LAPD did not immediately respond to The Post’s request for comment, and a sergeant at its media relations division said he was “not aware” of the letter Thursday evening.
Its not whenever Facebook first has cautioned police departments not to imitate clients or make fake records. In 2018, the organization reprimanded the Memphis Police Department for making an imaginary Bob Smith” account to keep tabs on Black Lives Matter protestors.
There’s no good reason for LAPD not to have known this, Rachel Levinson-Waldman, a representative chief at the Brennan Center, told the media.
This is truly essential to assist with guaranteeing the security of activists for racial equity and social justice,” she reportedly continued, adding that she hoped the legal warning would put other departments on notice.