Once something is on the internet, even if you delete it, it will be on the internet forever. Social Media is a great tool to stay connected to friends and family but it also can be used against you. It’s important to know how law enforcement uses social media and how you can make sure your information on social media doesn’t aid in their investigation.
While we are not condoning criminal behavior, many people are arrested and wrongfully accused of crimes. As a criminal defense law firm, we feel it is important to educate people on how to behave on social media so you do not wrongfully incriminate yourself or have your profiles be used as evidence against for a crime that allegedly committed.
When law enforcement has a suspect in mind, they will read through their social media accounts, trying to find any evidence. This includes looking at your connections or friends, comments, photos, and groups. If your profile is for public viewing nothing can stop them from obtaining this information. To protect yourself and your family, it’s better to keep your settings private or for friends only.
For example, if you are arrested for a DUI, law enforcement can look through your social media profiles to see if there are any pictures of you drinking around the time you were pulled over or if you are tagged in any pictures the next day. They will also look to see if there were any check-ins to local bars or restaurants nearby.
If you are accused of a crime and feel that there might be something incriminating on your social profiles, DO NOT delete your social media account. This will be considered tampering with evidence and you could face additional charges. Your best chance is to contact a criminal defense lawyer who can provide you with a credible defense.