A group called Par:AnoIA, linked to Anonymous, has obtained 14 gigabytes of data available openly on a server in Tel Aviv, Israel proving that Bank of America has invested in spying on web activity.
The group says that Bank of America employed private IT firms such as TEKsystems to spy on hacker forums, but also social media networks. Special software was created to use keywords to troll the Internet in order to judge sentiment about BoA among other things.
According to the website of TEKsystems,
We have the largest global network of credentialed IT professionals to lead and support your engagements. With over 100 locations, nearly 3,500 employees throughout North America, Europe and Asia and an IT consultant network that encompasses over 81% of the IT workforce, we deploy more than 80,000 technical professionals annually to support critical engagements at more than 6,000 client sites, including 82% of the Fortune 500. (Source)
Slightly concerning to anyone who values their privacy and the security of their data, as the video below highlights:
Bank of America is proving once again to be among the very worst in a pile of sleazy big banks. They have been implicated in loan modification and foreclosure fraud, they have admitted to fraud in the municipal bond derivatives market, and support of a cashless society.
This latest revelation of the extent to which Bank of America has gone to cast a wide net of (haphazard) spying over the Web should cause anyone who remains a customer to consider alternative options. One should especially question the safety of their personal data kept under the watch of Bank of America and other large corporations, as clearly the data they are collecting is open to anyone who knows where to look.
Given the new Cybersecurity Executive Order signed by Obama that gives carte blanche for corporations to openly obtain and share data in the name of national security, this type of activity should only escalate.