Advanced Application for Social Media Analytics (AASMA)


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Social media and privacy: Government use of surveillance tool raises concern over data protection

The limited information about the features of AASMA in publicly available government documents suggests the tool can “24X7” collect and analyse “live data” on users from “multiple social networks” including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, and Google+. It can track social media profiles, their posts and networks of connections to identify “top users”, conduct “sentiment analysis” of their posts to categorise them as either “positive” or “negative”, according to a note by the National Police Mission on use of the tool for surveillance for police departments. It can also track users’ devices and their locations and send “alerts” to authorities depending on the “criteria” set by the authorities, the note says. It adds that the police would use AASMA to “track public views and sentiments on various social media platforms”, to handle “sensitive issues and protests”.