By Mark Hosenball | Reuters
22 hours ago
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's command center routinely monitors dozens of popular websites, including Facebook, Twitter, Hulu, WikiLeaks and news and gossip sites including the Huffington Post and Drudge Report, according to a government document.
A "privacy compliance review" issued by DHS last November says that since at least June 2010, its national operations center has been operating a "Social Networking/Media Capability" which involves regular monitoring of "publicly available online forums, blogs, public websites and message boards."
The purpose of the monitoring, says the government document, is to "collect information used in providing situational awareness and establishing a common operating picture."
Another blog on the list, Cryptome. . . was one of the first websites to post information related to the Homeland Security monitoring program.
While a DHS official involved in the monitoring program confirmed the authenticity of the list, officials authorized to speak for the Department did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment.
Below are a handful of controversial sites included on DHS' 5-page list:
Danger Room (Wired)
NY Times Lede Blog
The Blotter (ABC News)
Threat Level (Wired)
Blogs that cover:
related to news and activity along US borders
drug trafficking and cybercrime
wildfires in Los Angeles
terrorism and security
issues related to Islam (where critics accuse the sites of political bias)
News and gossip sites
Homeland Security watches Twitter, social media - Yahoo! News