Wikileaks have a very interesting document on EU Framework 7 funded spy project that scans blogs, social networks, websites and discussion forums for stuff they don’t like:
This file, marked “confidential”, describes development of an EU-funded intelligence gathering system (“INDECT work package 4”) designed to comb webblogs, chat sites, newsreports, and social-networking sites to in order to build up automatic dossiers on individuals, organizations and their relationships.
Name of report:
Report on methodology for collection, cleaning and unified representation of large textual data from various sources: news reports, weblogs, chat.
D4.1 aims to focus on analysis of security related data from websites, blogs, chats and other social medium. The project aims to analyse data related to hooliganism, terrorism and other types of crime. The AGH (Prof. Wieslaw Lubaszewski’s) team has initiated the task of data collection. This section describes the ongoing effort and the methodology employed. It does not include the actual data as this is currently being collected. The current effort is directed towards collecting data on football hooliganism and sale of human organs. In parallel to this, the Ostrava team (Mr Adam Nemcek) has also started work on data collection on similar topics.
This is their video showing their system in action. Machine guns and jackboots all the way:
It seems that there are Irish reps for security research projects like these so it’s not like the Government doesn’t know what’s happening. According to the EU too there’s meant to be an ethics committee watching these things:
As a general rule, the Commission also ensures that the most sensitive projects systematically include an ethics committee, to enable researchers to develop technologies that respect individual freedoms.
But sure, we have nothing to hide if we’re innocent…