Social media can be utilized very effectively in a variety of ways. It can keep families and loved ones connected across long distances. It can allow job seekers, companies and professionals to network at the click of a button. And it can assist those who are passionate about a particular matter – from woodworking to political activism – to connect seamlessly.
If you are like millions of other Americans, you likely log on to at least one social media platform regularly. There is nothing wrong with this reality in and of itself. However, if you have been accused of criminal wrongdoing, it is important to either get off social media or approach it with extreme caution until your case has been fully resolved.
You’re (almost certainly) being watched
It is now common knowledge that law enforcement, professional investigators and prosecutors use social media when gathering evidence to support their suspicions. Although you should be very careful when emailing, texting and even searching for information on the internet until your case is closed, these communications can generally only be obtained via subpoena. Social media accounts, on the other hand, are widely accessible to these government actors, even if one’s privacy settings are maxed out.
Until your case is resolved – hopefully in your favor – you’ll want to either stay off of social media or post only if you’re thinking like a prosecutor. With every post, ask yourself, “Could this be misperceived or manipulated in ways that could be used against me?” And, should you have any questions about how to maintain the strength of your defense as you go about your life in this – and any other – way, don’t hesitate to seek legal guidance.