Antifa members are praising a New York University faculty member for creating a database of more than 1,500 ICE employees, which multiple online platforms have since removed for violating "doxxing" policies.
Sam Lavigne, a “Something in Residence” at NYU, promoted the list on Tuesday via Twitter and other platforms, drawing the attention of Github, which proceeded to remove the list from its site after determining that it constituted “doxxing and harassment, and violating a third party’s privacy.”
The now-defunct database included the name, title, and the state and county location of 1,595 U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents and employees, which Lavigne had culled from information on LinkedIn.
“We removed the project because it violates our community guidelines,” a GitHub spokesperson told The Verge. “In general, we have policies against use of GitHub for doxxing and harassment, and violating a third party’s privacy.”
Doxxing refers to the public act of releasing personal identifying information about an individual or organization, typically with the intent of enabling others to harass or threaten the target.
Before its removal, however, the database was copied and republished on multiple platforms, where it was noticed and promulgated by members of Antifa, the “anti-fascist” network known for its use of violence at political rallies.
“Some enterprising hero archived the ICE employees listed on linkedin,” Nebraska Antifa tweeted, providing an archived link to the original list.
“As ICE continues to ramp up its inhumane surveillance and detention efforts, I believe it’s important to document what’s happening, and by whom, in any way we can.” Lavigne declared in a Medium articlethat has also been removed, but which remains available in an archived version.
“While I don’t have a precise idea of what should be done with this data set, I leave it here with the hope that researchers, journalists, and activists will find it useful,” Lavigne wrote.
“I find it helpful to remember that as much as internet companies use data to spy on and exploit their users, we can at times reverse the story, and leverage those very same online platforms as a means to investigate or even undermine entrenched power structures,” he continued.
“In the future I’ll post a more detailed tutorial about this, but if you have any questions, get in touch,” Lavigne concluded after offering basic instructions for those who might wish to download their own data from LinkedIn using the same approach that he employed.
Campus Reform has reached out to NYU to request a statement addressing the doxxing of ICE agents by one of its faculty members, and is currently awaiting a response.