Representatives for the FBI already spoke to Fox News and said that the substantial Twitter payment was a “reimbursement” for expenses and costs of its requests. The representatives indicated that the payment was to compensate the social media platform for acting in accordance with legal “requests.”
The FBI stated that the group had compensated social media platforms beyond Twitter as well. The news network requested the names of other companies that the FBI had paid for these purposes. The federal agency, however, was not willing to provide further information regarding the matter. The representatives did say, though, that the FBI has to offer reimbursement for any and all reasonable expenses that tie in with the acquisition of information that is essential for legal processes.
“While we are not able to speak to specific payments, the government is required to provide reimbursement for reasonable expenses directly related to searching for, assembling, reproducing, or otherwise providing the information responsive to the legal process. This requirement is set by federal law and the courts are the final arbiters of what is reasonable compensation,” the FBI officials said.