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How Your “Private” Facebook Posts Turn Public…and Can Ruin Your Personal Injury Case

By Ross Jurewitz on January 2, 2013

Many of us are thrilled to share interesting pictures of ourselves and loved ones on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for the reaction of our friends and followers. Since we have the option under privacy settings to post more personal pictures and status updates privately to certain friends and family, there is absolutely no way that our postings will get in the wrong hands – right?

That is exactly what Randi Zuckerberg, sister of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, thought when she posted a silly photo of her family on Facebook under a private setting. After posting the picture, Randi Zuckerberg tagged everyone in the photo, which allowed the friends of those tagged in the picture to view, like, and comment on the “private” photo. This was how a friend of Zuckerberg’s sister, Callie Schweitzer, was able to see the photo and then share it with over 40,000 of her Twitter followers.

To Randi Zuckerberg’s dismay, tagging the photo made her private photo go public (the people tagged had full control over a copy of the photo).

Zuckerberg’s situation is a rude awakening of the reality of social media privacy online. Although we can try to do our best to keep our social media posts and pictures as private as possible, there is really no way to stop or control other users from making our private posts go public to the world.

Although Zuckerberg and other victims of leaked private photos may feel embarrassed and unhappy for a short time, there have also been other serious cases of victims that have lost millions in wrongful death verdicts and have been denied any recovery in their personal injury claim because of incriminating or harmful Facebook postings. A seemingly harmless posting, public or private, can drastically hurt a claimant’s personal injury case to get them the financial compensation that they deserve.

Don’t give the insurance companies even the smallest ammunition against your personal injury case by freezing or cancelling your social media accounts. If not, make sure to follow certain social media guidelines to uphold your case credibility. Bottom line, always post as if the entire world will see it. Don’t post anything on Facebook that you wouldn’t want an insurance company, your mom, or your worst enemy to see.

An online post you may consider innocent, may just be the reason why your personal injury claim gets denied. Get the facts and legal advice you need to prevent social media from harming your personal injury case at (888) 233-5020.

Ross Jurewitz

Ross Jurewitz is the founder and managing lawyer of the Jurewitz Law Group, a San Diego personal injury attorney law firm. These San Diego injury accident lawyers specialize in helping people seriously injured in a variety of accidents throughout San Diego County and California.

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