Not surprisingly The Department of Homeland Security is monitoring the social networks for various keywords that might be used by terrorists. If you don’t want your posts monitored it might not be a good idea to use a word like PORK. You might not want to use a word like MEXICO. Or terrorist. Thinking about using a phrase like I “ran out of gas over the bridge as I was leaving San Diego under rain clouds” and you might find yourself getting more scrutiny than you bargained for by the leviathan.
It took a freedom of information request by the Electronic Privacy Information Center to discover what we already knew. That the government is spying on you. Oddly it took a London newspaper to report it. I guess the government didn’t give the department of propaganda, commonly known as the media clearance to report it.
Daily Mail UK has the words you might want to avoid if you would prefer not to have big brother getting interested in your online activities:
The Department of Homeland Security has been forced to release a list of keywords and phrases it uses to monitor social networking sites and online media for signs of terrorist or other threats against the U.S.
The intriguing the list includes obvious choices such as ‘attack’, ‘Al Qaeda’, ‘terrorism’ and ‘dirty bomb’ alongside dozens of seemingly innocent words like ‘pork’, ‘cloud’, ‘team’ and ‘Mexico’.
Released under a freedom of information request, the information sheds new light on how government analysts are instructed to patrol the internet searching for domestic and external threats.
The words are included in the department’s 2011 ‘Analyst’s Desktop Binder‘ used by workers at their National Operations Center which instructs workers to identify ‘media reports that reflect adversely on DHS and response activities’.
Department chiefs were forced to release the manual following a House hearing over documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit which revealed how analysts monitor social networks and media organisations for comments that ‘reflect adversely’ on the government.
However they insisted the practice was aimed not at policing the internet for disparaging remarks about the government and signs of general dissent, but to provide awareness of any potential threats.
As the oft quoted Benjamin Franklin said, “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.