No one knows for sure but there are an estimated 4,000 active public and private “social media” sites accessible on the Internet. This recent explosion of online social media sites can be a treasure trove of valuable information for the skilled investigator. By following Internet footprints and searching the invisible or “deep web,” skilled investigators can often discover valuable investigative information that can make or break a case. Often incriminating posts, photos, and links associated with an individual can give clues to additional investigative leads and provide a wealth of valuable information when investigating cases.
Online social network information has been successfully used in almost every type of investigation, including background checks, business vetting, fraud and theft cases, counterfeit product and trademark infringements, criminal acts, child custody disputes, divorce cases, and many others.
Unfortunately, some investigators have not kept up with the new social network technology and do not effectively use social media to aid in investigations. Everyone knows how to search Google, Bing, or Yahoo for basic information and most investigators know how to conduct basic searches of sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Linkedin, Digg, Mixx, Reddit, Propeller, etc. but very few investigators have even heard of social media sites like Taltopia, Cellufun, Wiser, Sootle, Italk or the thousands of other sites. Unless an investigator is familiar with Clusty, Blinkx, BrainBoost, Wotbox, and Technorati, and knows about protocol analyzers and packet sniffers, even if they knew where and how to search the thousands of social media sites, they will likely just end up with a jumbled cluster of information that is humanly impossible to effectively filter and analyze.
Millions of people share personal and business information online and Babnick and Associates has the knowledge and skill to uncover and effectively use social media information to aid in many cases. Examples of evidence found includes incriminating photos, status updates that disprove claims in lawsuits, and crumbs of information about a person’s whereabouts which lead to their location.