Twitter Inc (NASDAQ: TWTR) has prohibited intelligence agencies from accessing real-time service that monitors tweets and alerts in case of a local emergency.
Dataminr, the independent company that monitors real-time tweets, is able to transform the website’s stream along with different data to actionable signals that discover must-know information and alerts when is needed.
The monitoring company alerted about the attacks in Paris and Brussel minutes earlier the media knew.
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Dataminr works with a software that detects different patterns on the social media, including the million tweets that fly around it every day. It then compares the obtained data with different market and geographical data, among others, to validate the information.
On Sunday, the Wall Street Journal published the news that hadn’t been made public before. The action taken by the social media company is a response to its user policy that doesn’t allow government surveillance in their website.
Twitter actually owns around a 5 percent stake in the company that has access to both public tweets and real-time stream, while selling this data to different clients and buyers.
“We have never authorized Dataminr or any third party to sell data to a government intelligence agency for surveillance purposes,” said Twitter in a statement to CNN Money.
The social media company announced the prohibition to Dataminr while informing the intelligence agency who affirms Twitter might be worried about how the social media users will feel about their information being opened.
Social media information has become a very relevant matter on preventing tragedies and finishing missions for the intelligence agency.
A CIA spokesperson talked to CBS News, assuring the importance of this open information in the solving of their missions.
“The open source environment includes many sources of information, including social media that are increasingly valuable in today’s world. This information has been critical in providing indications of pending plots by ISIL, al-Qaeda and other groups,” said the spokesperson to CBS
Twitter has stated that the intelligence agency is in the position to use and review public tweets and public accounts like any other user.
The move by Twitter doesn’t affect Dataminr nor its clients in the industry business and news media.