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Facebook Reportedly Tracked Private Messages of Users Who Doubted 2020 US Election Results

© AP Photo / Marcio Jose SanchezAn official ballot drop box is seen Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, in Santa Clarita, Calif.
An official ballot drop box is seen Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, in Santa Clarita, Calif. - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.09.2022
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Facebook* has been tracking the private messages and data of its users and reported to the FBI those who doubted the results of the 2020 US presidential election or expressed anti-government and anti-authority sentiments, the New York Post reported on Thursday.
Working in collaboration with the FBI, Facebook* transmitted the private messages with allegedly "subversive content" in a redacted form to the domestic terrorism operational unit at FBI headquarters in Washington, without a subpoena, the report said, citing sources in the Justice Department.
The FBI processed the received data and created "leads" that it then sent to its field offices around the United States. In turn, the field offices requested subpoenas from the US Attorney’s Office in their districts to officially obtain the private conversations from Facebook*, the report said.
As soon as a subpoena was requested, within an hour, Facebook* sent back gigabytes of data and photos, the report cited one of the sources as saying.
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Facebook* spokesperson Erica Sackin called the claims against the company "wrong," but noted that the collaboration with the FBI was designed to "protect people from harm," the report said.
The FBI did not find any criminal content in the messages received from Facebook* that it investigated over the past 19 months since the beginning of the collaboration operation, the report added.
One of the sources described the FBI-Facebook operation to spy on users as "a waste of time," according to the report.
*Facebook is banned in Russia over extremism.
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