Facebook cooperating with Chicago police to block posting of criminal content

Josh Peterson Contributor
Font Size:

The Chicago Police Department and Facebook have teamed up to stop users of the social network from posting “criminal” content.

The recent debate over government surveillance, however, has highlighted the role that technology companies play in law enforcement and national security investigations.

Noting the larger trend of cooperation between social media companies and law enforcement, independent journalist Kenneth Lipp reported Thursday that the Chicago Police Department was working with Facebook to rid the site of users posting illegal content.

“Also, not yet reported in the press, a senior police officer from the Chicago PD told a panel on Monday that his department was working with Facebook’s security chief to block users’ from the site by account (person), IP, and device (he did not say if by UUID or MAC address or other means of hardware ID) if it is determined they have posted what is deemed criminal content,” wrote Lipp.

The police officer mentioned spoke at the annual gathering of the International Association of Chiefs of Police on Oct. 21.

Facebook’s Community Standards and Statement of Rights and Responsibilities identifies types of content that could be deemed criminal, such as hate speech, pornography and copyright infringing material.

The company points out on its Safety Center page, however, that not every law enforcement request will result in a user account being blocked from the site.

“If Facebook receives an official request for account records, we first establish the legitimacy of the request,” states Facebook.

“When responding, we apply strict legal and privacy requirements,” says the company.

Follow Josh on Twitter and Facebook