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How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Tag: Social Media

FBI Director James Comey Blames Twitter for ‘Monster of Bias’

FBI Director James Comey

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling

FBI Director James Comey said Americans’ trust in government institutions is eroding because of “echo chambers” like Twitter.

“My children, again, discipline me not to go on Twitter because apparently people say bad things about me on Twitter. But things like Twitter offer us the opportunity only to encounter views consistent with our own, 24 hours a day,” Comey explained at a Center for Strategic and International Studies event Wednesday, Politico reports. “There’s an opportunity to feed that monster of a bias, that confirmation bias, all the time. So it accelerates that fractionalizing of our society, and it makes it much harder for people like me, like you, like the people in here, to speak reason to folks about our institutions.”

Comey didn’t directly mention the Hillary Clinton investigation, but eluded to it.

Twitter has become an outlet for GOP attacks against the FBI’s decision against charging Clinton for her use of a private email server as secretary of state.

“I’m not going to talk about the email investigation but I see some of the things people say about this thing, I’m like, ‘really?’ But it becomes truth to so many people. And I don’t know how to unring that bell,” he said. “So I do think it’s become enormously challenging for people in institutions that depend upon the trust of the citizens to recapture trust where it’s been lost, explain ourselves in a way that allows them to resist demagoguery or the Twitterverse.”

Border Patrol Proposes Asking for Social Media Handle of Visitors in Visa Waiver Program

Facebook_logo-2By Steve Neavling

The federal government has come under fire for a proposal to ask for the social media handles of people visiting the country under the visa waiver program.

Civil liberties advocates say the proposal goes too far, but counterterrorism experts counter it’s not far enough, NBC News reports. 

Border Patrol submitted the proposal to the Federal Register last month that would include a social media section to visa applications. Answering the question would be optional.

Counterterrorism experts are trying to learn more about people before they enter the country.

Homeland Security Wants Permission to Ask Travelers for Social Media Accounts

passport1By Steve Neavling

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection may ask travelers for more than their passports as America looks to tighten its vetting process.

CBP submitted a proposal that would enable official to requests that travelers voluntarily disclose their social media account information, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports. 

“It will be an optional data field to request social media identifiers to be used for vetting purposes, as well as applicant contact information,” the CPB said in the proposal.

Citizens from 38 countries are allowed to travel to the U.S. for business or tourism for no longer than 90 days without a visa.

The social media information would help officials assess “potential risks to national security,” Homeland Security said.

Secret Service Investigates Trump’s Former Butler Over Comments about Obama’s Death

Donald Trump and former butler Anthony Senecal.

Donald Trump and former butler Anthony Senecal.

By Steve Neavling

The Secret Service is investigating Donald Trump’s friend and former butler over vile Facebook posts calling for President Obama’s murder.

Anthony Senecal said Obama is a “Kenyan fraud” who should be hanged for treason, the New York Times reports. 

“With the last breath I draw I will help rid this America of the scum infested in its government,” Mr. Senecal wrote last May, saying that the president should be dragged from the “white mosque” and hanged “from the portico — count me in !!!!!”

The Secret Service said it was “aware of the matter and will conduct the appropriate investigation.”

Trump’s campaign spokesman criticized Senecal’s statements.

“We totally and completely disavow the horrible statements made by him.”

In a follow-up interview with NBC News, Senecal again called for the hanging of President Obama and Hillary Clinton. He added that Detroit and Milwaukee should become “nuclear bomb sites” because the cities have been “disgraced by Muslims.”

CIA Tweets U.S. Capture of Osama bin Laden – Five Years Later

Osama bin Laden

Osama bin Laden

By Steve Neavling

The CIA commemorated the five-year anniversary of killing Osama bin Laden with a series of live tweets.

On Sunday, the CIA tweeted that bin Laden was found “on third floor and killed.”

“The takedown of bin Laden stands as one of the great intelligence successes of all time. History has been a key element of CIA’s social media efforts,” CIA spokesman Ryan Trapani said, according to ABC. “On the fifth anniversary, it is appropriate to remember the day and honor all those who had a hand in this achievement.”

FBI Launches Facebook Page in Farsi to Solicit Tips for Missing Ex-Agent Levinson

Robert Levinson

Robert Levinson

By Steve Neavling

In hopes of finding a former FBI agent who went missing in Iran nine years ago, the bureau launched a Facebook page in Farsi for information about his whereabouts.

ABC News reports that the Facebook page is intended to get the attention of the Iranian public.

Levinson, 67, who went missing from Iran’s Kish Island in March 2007, was not among the prisoner swap between Iran and the U.S.

The FBI is offering a $5 million reward for information that would identify his whereabouts.

“The new Facebook page, as well as a missing-person poster and press release in Farsi issued last year, represents the most concerted effort so far to reach Iranians in their native language,” ABC News wrote.

Duped! Hoax Website Falsely Claims ‘El Chapo’ Was Escaped Jail Again

Joaquin_Guzman-LoeraBy Steve Neavling

Social media was abuzz Sunday after rumors circulated that Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman broke free of jail for the third time.

The source of the rumors was a hoax ABC News site that posted a story that claimed Guzman escaped a Mexican prison once again.

Mexican and U.S. officials confirmed that Guzman did not escape and was still in custody.

The hoax site has been the source of plenty of fake stories that tricked readers.

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Investigates Whether Pennsylvania Man Accused of Supporting ISIS Communicated with Terrorists

Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz

Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz

By Steve Neavling

Days after they FBI arrested a 19-year-old Pennsylvania man accused of using 57 social media accounts to promote ISIS, their attention has turned to whether he was acting alone or had acquaintances, Penn Live reports.

“The goal is to find out who he’s been dealing with in order to see if there are others in the U.S. or outside the U.S.,” said John Weaver, an intelligence analysis coordinator and assistant professor of intelligence analysis at York College. “The FBI is probably exploiting his phone records and computers to find out who he talked to, what sites he went to, what messages were sent and received.”

To determine whether Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz had help or was receiving information from terrorists, the FBI is combing through his social media counts and text messages, which have been how many would-be terrorists are communicating.

“By identifying one individual, they can possibly identify a network,” said Charles Palmer, an associate professor of interactive media at Harrisburg University.

But the concern is that the messages may have been encrypted.

“There are a lot of ways computer forensic experts can pull information off of a computer. If it’s encrypted, all they’re pulling is a bunch of jibberish,” said Chuck Davis, corporate faculty professor of computer forensics and ethical hacking at Harrisburg University.