People today live, work, play, and basically breath on the Internet and social media. Between platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more, acting as social interaction and networking mediums, to places like Youtube, Snapchat, Instagram, and more allowing for unlimited personal content creation, there truly is no where to hide on the Internet. It’s general common sense to stay safe by keeping your personal information secure when you’re online, but if you’re involved in any type of lawsuit, it can seem like everything in your virtual life is up for grabs. “Phishing expeditions” are a process of searching recent accident victim’s social media platforms for any information that can be used to harass, intimidate, embarrass, or otherwise discredit them in front of a jury to avoid paying due compensation to the victim, and unfortunately it happens too often.
It can be unfair, but it’s true that everything you put on the Internet becomes public. Forever there for everyone and anyone to see, save, copy, and distribute should they choose to. Is it right, or even legal? No. Does it happen? Unfortunately, all the time. If you have been in any kind of accident or are involved in a lawsuit you should lock down all social media until after the litigation process is over. This doesn’t mean delete and get rid of everything, just take a break. Avoid posting any new pictures or information as well as letting friends tag you in things, don’t add new friends you don’t know in person, or mention anything about your accident or the person who caused it. It may not be right, but a lot of times the people fighting against you will do whatever it takes to make you look bad, including something as dishonest as taking a five-year-old photograph of you smiling with your friends over a few beers and using it to turn a jury against you. The truth is, the only way to make sure your case is foolproof is to heed the advice of your attorney and temporarily detach from the virtual world until your case is over and anything you say or do cannot be used against you in a court of law.
If you or someone you know is in need of assistance from a professional attorney for help with any case, call Harris Law today at 231.347.4444 or fill out the free consultation form in the sidebar to schedule your free personal consultation. A friendly and qualified member of our team is standing by to help. At Harris Law, we serve all of Michigan and look forward to finding out how we might be able to best serve you.