Well, no surprise, instead of actually delivering mail, the Postal Inspection Service is now worried about scanning for “inflammatory” content. Not actual crimes mind you, but people trying to protest or organize rallies. And not just any protests, like the “peaceful” protests last summer, but any that would be considered “right wing.”
I predict that not only will the USPIS (yup, that’s an acronym only the government can get behind) not find a whole lot, but it will simply drive people underground. It’s too easy to simply not use social media to organize, and if you’re really smart, you’ll organize using something like Signal, which actively makes fun of government organizations trying to break its code and encryption. Anyone using Facebook to organize is a fool and won’t last long.
I’m not a fan of government abusing authority to monitor for non-crimes, so here are a ton of resources you should use to keep the Postal Service’s “elite” force from spying on your non-COVID friendly BBQ:
- Identity and Privacy Guide. Yup, its a government site. For SEALs. Because lots of foreign governments want to use social media to identify and influence Special Operators. So you can use the same guide they do for keeping their information safe.
- NCIS Social Media Handbook. Not as cool as the TV show, but this guide helps you secure most of the privacy settings on popular social media.
- Identity Force Blog. A good read for actual outlines of how bad things happen online.
Here’s the reality. While stupid people will use social media to organize and commit crimes, those are easy to find. I’m more worried about the people with real skills organizing off social media. Those people could plot high end crimes that we’ll never see coming. Those are people like the Unabomber, who unlike the fools on Facebook actually killed people and was difficult to track down. These people will require actual focus, time and effort to track down and stop, and that’s exactly what we aren’t doing when we waste time scanning social media.
This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.