Keeping Yourself Safe On Social Media After An Accident
Social media like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc., can be a fun way to stay in touch with your friends and family. These sites have become so ingrained in our every day life, it’s easy to forget about thinking twice about posting certain things to your feed. Between photos, posts, check-in’s, and so on and so forth, we can sometimes leave ourselves vulnerable to being scrutinized online.
After being in an accident, the best way to protect yourself and your case would be to close all social media accounts. Of course, this can sometimes be easier said than done, considering social media is a way we stay in touch with others in our life that we may not necessarily get a chance to talk with otherwise. However, it’s important to be mindful about what we post to our pages. Insurance companies absolutely will comb over the pages of people who are trying to make a claim, and will use any posts they can to disprove your right to making a claim.
Guide To Keeping Your Page Secure After An Accident
- Don’t accept friend requests or follower requests from people you do not know. It’s very possible that someone may attempt to get access to your page through these means. Once they’re in, this renders your privacy settings useless as they can save any posts that may put your claim in danger.
- Don’t talk about the accident. It can be tempting to post after being in an accident to inform friends and family about what happened, perhaps even sharing photos of the damage, or of themselves in the hospital. But even something as simple as posting about these and expressing a desire to get back to good health as soon as you can, can lead investigators to use this as proof your damages are not as bad as you’ve claimed them to be.
- Do not lie about your accident online. Do not embellish details, or lie about what you were doing before it happened. Posts on social media are geotagged, meaning, they have location data attached to them showing the physical location where it was posted. This information can show where you were, and what you were doing at the time of your posting. Adjusters, investigators, or defense counsel can use this information to expose anything you may have misrepresented.
- Don’t post anything about your case. Anything you’ve discussed with your attorney regarding your case should be kept between you and them. This is privileged information, but once posted online becomes fair game as evidence in your case. Posting about your case online can have serious repercussions and can jeopardize your claim.
After Your Accident: How To Stay Smart On Social Media
- Put your page on the highest privacy settings possible. Locking down your page is the best way to protect what you are posting from the wrong eyes. Make it so people cannot read the posts on your page without being a follower or a friend. This will help keep the insurance company from seeing what you have posted. It is also easy to set things to private on your pages, all you have to do is go to your privacy settings on each of your social media profiles. However, keep it in mind that no social media is 100% private, and understand that it is important to not post anything about your accident online regardless of privacy settings.
- Stay mindful about where you check-in online. Checking-in is a popular feature on social media that a lot of people use to share with friends and family the places you enjoy going to. However, doing this after an accident can jeopardize your claim. Investigators can use this information to try and disprove your claim to damages, especially if you’re checking in at locations that show you are doing any sort of physical activity, such as visiting the mall, or going to the gym.
- Remind family/friends to be mindful about their posts. Well-meaning family members or friends may want to help keep the rest of your friends list informed about how you are doing after an accident. Perhaps your friend wants to share about the fun hang-out you went to, and posts pictures and tags you in them. Maybe a family member posts a check-in with you tagged. All of these things can pop up on your profile, be visible to an investigator, and potentially be used against you. Make sure you tell friends/family members that these kinds of posts can harm your case, and ask them to not tag you or share posts that involve you in any way.
- Refrain from sharing any photos of your accident or damages. It is important to take photos of your accident, of your car, the scene, and any injuries you may have, as evidence of your damages in the event it is needed in your case. However, it is extremely important to not post these pictures online for everyone to see. Anyone can save these pictures and use them against you. These photos need to stay between you and your attorney.
As stated previously, the best way to protect your case is to close all of your social media accounts, at least temporarily, until the conclusion of your case. Social media, no matter how much you secure your profile with privacy settings, is still publicly available online. Your profiles can easily be found and scrutinized for information, and investigators will use anything they can garner as evidence in your case. If you just cannot go without your social media, follow these tips on how to stay as secure online as you possibly can after experiencing an accident.
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