Can My Social Media Accounts Be Used As Evidence Against Me? 

 January 15, 2015

By  LMW Attorneys

This past year, 76 percent of all adult Internet users were on some form of social media account according to the Pew Research Group. Many of those users were on multiple sites, including Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Instagram. Social media has become so prevalent that it now makes up 60 percent of what we do online! But with every tweet, post or pin, we should be careful. Many individuals believe that they can remain anonymous while online. However, a little over-sharing online may land someone in a whole lot of trouble. Learn how your online activity has some real life consequences.

What You Post May Hurt You

In today’s world, we want to share everything, from the little moments to the big life achievements. However, if you are already in trouble with the law, sharing what you are doing might lead to some big trouble.

While it is unlikely that police are searching random social media profiles for criminal activity, they do check the sites of individuals who have been suspect or convicted of a crime. The police have caught many individuals with active warrants after the wanted person posted their whereabouts on social media. Additionally, social media can be used against you to build a case.

For example: Let us say Matt is on probation for an alcohol related incident. Under the terms of his probation, he must attend weekly AA meetings and avoid consuming alcohol. Later, Matt goes to a concert, and while there, drinks beer. Matt’s friend Sara takes a picture of Matt drinking the beer, uploads it her Facebook page and tags Matt. There is now evidence online that Matt has broken the terms of his probation. Because of this, Matt is now subject to additional punishments, and may even be facing jail time.

What About the Right to Privacy?

For some, this may feel like a breach of privacy. However, the fact is the Internet is not categorized as private. Courts have ruled again and again that individuals do not have a reasonable expectation to privacy online. This means that what we post can be used against us. Even if you have your account set so only your “friends” can see what you are posting, it is still considered public domain.

Contact an Attorney Today

If you or a loved one is facing criminal charges, call LMW today! Our legal team can help you navigate the difficult judicial system and fight vigorously to for your rights. Contact LMW today for a free consultation.