Leading cybersecurity firms are reporting that lawyers are now drawing up to 75% of their evidence in litigation cases from social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram.
Especially when investigating asset disputes of the extremely wealthy, lawyers will search for evidence on their kid’s Instagram posts, according to Oisín Fouere, managing director of K2 Intelligence via The Guardian.
In one particular divorce case, a millionaire claimed not to have the $30 million he was ordered to pay, so lawyers went straight to social media, explains Andrew Beckett, a managing director of cybersecurity and investigations firm Kroll.
“We monitored social media, particularly for his children, who were in their 20s, and found a lot of posts from the same geo-tagged sites. Cross-referencing that with land registry and other similar bodies overseas, we found half a dozen properties that were registered in the name of this person.
“We were able to go to the court with a list of assets that we conservatively estimated at $60m, which the court then seized until he settled the amount that had been ordered.”
In the end, it was the ostentatious display of wealth and geo-tagging of his rich kids on Instagram that busted the millionaire.
In a more recent lawsuit involving evidence from social media, a judge asked rapper 50 Cent to explain his cash-filled Instagram posts after he filed for bankruptcy to avoid paying $7 million in damages for releasing a sex tape of fellow rapper Rick Ross’ ex. 50 Cent’s lawyers argued it was part of upholding the image of his brand.