The U.S. government wants to more aggressively track terrorists on social media — and it’s asking for your help.

The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Prague are sponsoring a social media gaming contest to test ways social media and open source data can be used to track terrorists and locate missing children.

The FBI announced last month it plans to develop an app to monitor public social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter, and this game shows the government is still looking for ways to expand its social media tracking abilities.

Tag Challenge, the social media game, will be played by people in Washington D.C., New York City, London, Stockholm, Sweden and Bratislava, Slovakia on March 31.

Here’s how the game works . Profiles and mugshots of five suspects in each city will be posted on Tag Challenge. Players will have an entire day to locate the suspects in a public area of their city. The suspects will be wearing a t-shirt with the Tag Challenge logo. Suspects are not real-life crime suspects. The first player to upload photos of each of the five suspects to the Tag Challenge website will win $5,000.

Players can team up with other players, but only one person will be rewarded the cash prize. Although funded by the State Department, the contest page says the game is “not associated with any law enforcement agency and the contest is not part of any law enforcement effort.” Graduate students from six countries who participated in social media and security conferences organized the game out of curiosity and for fun.

The game will offer government officials insight to “whether and how social media can be used to accomplish a realistic, time-sensitive, international law enforcement goal,” the Tag Challenge website says. “Results, strategies, and any data derived from the event will be made public after its conclusion.”


Should universities be allowed to force student athletes to have their Facebook and Twitter accounts monitored by coaches and administrators? “No,” says a bill recently introduced into the Maryland state legislature.

For the first time, Facebook has revealed details about how it tracks users across the web.

The U.S. government has targeted a WikiLeaks volunteer using secret court orders that would force Google and Sonic, a small Internet provider, to hand over information from his email account, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Starting this month, a host of popular Web sites will warn users who are surfing the Web on outdated browsers.

The revised Net neutrality rules that the FCC approved in December became official on Friday when they entered the Federal Register. They will take effect on November 20.

After receiving user backlash over privacy for its newly launch “social ads,” LinkedIn had announced changes to the ad formats.

Google has identified a piece of malware that is redirecting unusual search traffic to its servers, prompting the company to warn affected users.

The FBI seized Web-hosting servers from a data facility today, causing a number of sites to go down or transfer operations to other facilities.

Google has released a new feature called “Me on the Web.” It’s a reputation management tool accessible from the Google Dashboard

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