Do Facebook Searches to Show Disability Fraud Violate the Constitution?

28 July 2014 Publication
Authors: Peter Vogel

E-Commerce Times

Facebook strenuously objected to warrants requiring it to turn over massive amounts of user data to the Manhattan DA and barring it from letting its users know anything about the investigation. Although its protest failed to persuade the lower court, and more than 100 people were arrested after Facebook complied, the company has filed an appeal, arguing that the warrants were unconstitutional.

Looking for evidence of disability fraud, the district attorney for Manhattan (New York County), in July 2013 obtained 381 search warrants, supported by a 93-page affidavit, and served them on Facebook as part of a long-term investigation into a massive scheme.

The search warrants were “sealed,” which means they were not made public. The grounds for the warrants were that posts, photos
and other information could provide ample evidence of activity that would show that those being investigated were not disabled.

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