Here is an interesting article that chronicles the legal efforts of Facebook to safeguard the information of its users from intrusive government searches.
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.
Ultimately, 106 former New York police and firefighters were arrested, which The New York Times reported in January 2014. They were accused of having been
“…coached on how to fail memory tests, feign panic attacks and, if they had worked during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, to talk about their fear of airplanes and entering skyscrapers, prosecutors said. And they were told to make it clear they could not leave the house, much less find a job.”
Facebook previously had filed an objection to the search warrants, claiming they were in violation of the 1984 Stored Communications Act since the Facebook content would be turned over to the DA rather than released by the users in response to Facebook requests.
To read the article in its entirety go here. To read Facebook’s legal brief on this issue go here