Lawsuit: FBI paid Best Buy's Geek Squad employees to turn over customer data


Electronics retail giant Best Buy confirmed that four Geek Squad employees accepted payment from the FBI to turn over alleged child pornography, KPIX reported.

>> Read more trending news

The Electronic Frontier Foundation in San Francisco sued the FBI to release nearly 200 pages of information about its relationship with Best Buy. Redacted documents showed the employees had turned over computer files to the FBI.

Best Buy officials said the employees used very poor judgment and the action was a violation of company policy. Three of those employees are no longer with the company, KPIX reported.

“We’re very concerned about the FBI using Geek Squad employees or any computer repair facility employees to potentially, you know, get a back door around our Fourth Amendment rights,” said Aaron Mackey, staff attorney with the EFF.

The EFF said it was most concerned about payment to Best Buy employees. Court documents revealed an FBI payment request for $500 to pay a Geek Squad employee, KPIX reported.

“When the FBI is actually rewarding employees of Best Buy for finding this information and potentially directing them and engaging in sort of an ongoing, multiyear relationship with managers and others at this facility, it raises the question as to how much are they now just employees and technicians at Best Buy doing their job and happening across this or are they actively searching for it in the hopes of obtaining future rewards,” Mackey told KPIX, saying that it was a violation of the Fourth Amendment.

The FBI said it does not comment on its relationships with informants, KPIX reported.

 


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

Mellow Mushroom in DeKalb County fails health inspection
Mellow Mushroom in DeKalb County fails health inspection

A Mellow Mushroom in Brookhaven failed a recent health inspection, according to DeKalb County health department. The popular pizza spot, at 4058 Peachtree Rd., scored a 66 on its Thursday health inspection. Any score below a 70 is considered failing. MORE: How to check restaurant health inspection scores in metro Atlanta counties Violations including...
Chicago Bulls add Alpharetta’s Kaiser Gates to Summer League team
Chicago Bulls add Alpharetta’s Kaiser Gates to Summer League team

Another basketball player from St. Francis High School in Alpharetta will get a shot in the NBA. Kaiser Gates, a native of north Fulton County and 2015 graduate of the school, went unselected in the 2018 NBA Draft on Thursday night, but was signed by the Chicago Bulls on Friday and will join the team in the NBA’s Summer League. Gates, 21, played...
Gwinnett weekend weather and events: Rainy start, sunnier Sunday
Gwinnett weekend weather and events: Rainy start, sunnier Sunday

Pack an umbrella Friday and get ready for a warm weekend in Gwinnett County. Friday: Isolated thunderstorms are predicted to start around 5 p.m., according to Channel 2 Action News. The storms are expected to last through the evening.  The high for the day will be close to 90. • If the rain holds off in Duluth, head to the city&rsquo...
DeKalb County weekend weather & events: Storms Friday and Saturday 
DeKalb County weekend weather & events: Storms Friday and Saturday 

DeKalb County residents should expect scattered thunderstorms for Friday afternoon. Temperatures will range from high 80s to low 90s over the weekend.  Friday: Rain is rolling into the DeKalb area. Residents can expect a low of 71 and a high of 89. Stay dry and check out new art exhibits at the Spruill Center for the Arts in Dunwoody...
‘Project Rocket’ distribution center could bring 1,800 jobs to Gwinnett
‘Project Rocket’ distribution center could bring 1,800 jobs to Gwinnett

An enormous warehouse distribution facility with a mysterious potential tenant has been proposed on the far western side of Gwinnett County. According to new documents filed with Gwinnett’s planning commission, the proposed facility near Stone Mountain — dubbed only “Project Rocket” — would be a 2.5 million square feet...
More Stories