CIA- Backed Firm Touted Social Media Surveillance of Students to Sell Services to Evanston Police
Emails obtained by Lucy Parsons Labs reveal that Geofeedia touted social media surveillance of middle and high school students by its suburban Chicago police customers in an effort to sell their services to Evanston police.
Geofeedia provides law enforcement with tools to monitor social media use by mapping location and other data. It has received funding from the investment arm of the CIA, In-Q-Tel.
The company became infamous after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) published a report in 2016 on the use of their products by police to monitor demonstrations against police violence.
Geofeedia’s courting of the Evanston Police Department (EPD) goes back to 2013, and as emails show, the company developed a relationship with police at a time when the sale of surveillance technology to law enforcement became ubiquitous.