We understand that social networking web sites such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn have become progressively more popular forums for people to communicate with friends and family, share their personal thoughts, feelings and upload personal photographs. These personal web sites generate a flood of personal data and may be a tempting source of information about an innocent plaintiff to an adversary. Although many believe that they have only allowed access of their site to their personal “friends” by restricting access for permission and invitation, there is no assurance of privacy on the “invitation only” sites.
In addition to opposing attorneys routinely reviewing these websites to assemble tidbits of information about the plaintiff, they frequently will send written discovery requests to obtain the user name and password of the plaintiff’s social networking web sites. Defense counsel can also try to contact the company hosting the site directly to access details posted on the site, all without the knowledge of the unsuspecting plaintiff.
Avoid surprises and protect yourself and your personal information by shutting down your social accounts during the pendency of the case.