The Words that DHS Patrols For On Websites

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In case you are curious about which words in particular that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) cross-references when monitoring your online communications at social networking sites, online media and other websites for signs of terrorist or other threats against the U.S., here is the list of keywords that will get you flagged.

As first reported by MailOnline (a UK alternative news outlet, the Department of Homeland Security was recently forced to release the list following a freedom of information request and lawsuit by the Electronic Privacy Information Center, a privacy watchdog group.

The Freedom of Information Act lawsuit revealed how analysts patrol the internet and monitor social networks and media organizations for comments that ‘reflect adversely’ on the government and to provide awareness of any potential threats. The agency insists it only looks for evidence of genuine threats to the U.S. and not for signs of general dissent.

Original document and list.


The Electronic Privacy Center described the choice of words as ‘broad, vague and ambiguous’. They point out that it includes ‘vast amounts of First Amendment protected speech that is entirely unrelated to the Department of Homeland Security mission to protect the public against terrorism and disasters.’

Here is the list in ‘image’ format, so as not to be flagged here 😉



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