Geek Squad

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Group.png Geek Squad  
(Corporation)Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
BestBuyMarkvilleGeekSquad.jpg
Formation1994
HeadquartersMinnesota, USA
Worked with the FBI to circumvent the need for search warrants for computers in for repair.

Geek Squad Inc. is a subsidiary of American and Canadian multinational consumer electronics corporation Best Buy. The company has been working with the FBI to circumvent the need for search warrants for computers in for repair.

The subsidiary was originally an independent company founded in 1994, and offers various computer-related services and accessories for residential and commercial clients. In 2002, they merged with Best Buy,[1]. The Geek Squad provides services in-store, on-site, and over the Internet via remote access, and also provides 24-hour telephone and emergency on-site support. Geek Squad no longer works solely on computer-related devices.

Activities

The EFF revealed that Geek Squad had been working with the FBI for over 10 years and employees received money from them.In 2017 the EFF sued the company, charging that its policy required customers to surrender their Fourth Amendment rights, protecting against unreasonable searches.[2][3]

Documents show that over the years of working with Geek Squad employees, FBI agents developed a process for investigating and prosecuting people who sent their devices to the Geek Squad for repairs. Some of these reports indicate that the FBI treated Geek Squad employees as informants, identifying them as “CHS,” which is shorthand for confidential human sources. [3]

After being alerted, the FBI agent would show up, review the images or video and determine whether they believe they are illegal content. After that, they would seize the hard drive or computer and send it to another FBI field office near where the owner of the device lived. Agents at that local FBI office would then investigate further, and in some cases try to obtain a warrant to search the device.[3]



References