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The Social Media Trap

By Eugene Bruno on February 27, 2024

Social media is a part of everyday modern life, but it can be risky. Posting photos gives people a window into your private life. Do you know who is peeking at your posts? If you’ve been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, it is important to understand how a defendant’s insurance company will snoop through your social media to try to undermine and lowball your claim.

If you’ve filed a claim for injuries caused by someone else’s negligence, that defendant’s insurance company will almost certainly snoop into your social media to see if they can undermine your claim. They will snoop to find instances where you may have said or done something that the insurance company can twist or intentionally misconstrue to hurt your case. For example, they will use photos to suggest that you’re not hurt or not hurt as badly as you say you are. They will surveil your social media, and whatever they find, they will manipulate to hurt your case and minimize your compensation. Do they cherry-pick your photos? You bet. Is it an invasion of your privacy? Yes, that too. But they’ll do it anyway. Here are some of their common tactics to be aware of:

Digital Surveillance

Insurance company claims adjusters routinely snoop through social media to find anything they can use against you. Years ago, they would have had to hire a private investigator to follow you around with a video recorder, but not anymore. Today, they can snoop on you from their desktop computer. Typically, they look for photos posted by you or your friends that show you engaging in some activity that suggests you’re not really as hurt as you claim.


They will rifle through everything, but they may pick only a few photos that show you in an unflattering way or in ways that seem to contradict your claim. They will ignore any photos that don’t help to destroy your claim.


They will twist facts, take things out of context, and outright misrepresent the facts to hurt your case and cut your compensation. They will imply that you’re lying about how badly you’re injured, or they may otherwise suggest that you’re a fraud or that your claim is frivolous.

Snooping through social media is becoming increasingly common because it is such a rich source of “evidence” they can use to try to lowball your claim. Unfortunately, you cannot expect the courts to protect you from digital snooping. Most courts generally find that you have no privacy rights in photos you post on public social media accounts. If your social media is private, you may have more protection, but what you post is still not 100% private. To help protect your privacy, be sure to set your privacy settings appropriately, be careful about what you (and family and friends) post, and be extra careful about friend or follower requests from strangers.

Social media has the ability to enhance or distort our public image. In the context of your personal injury claim, however, your social media will be used to distort your image in negative ways, which will harm your case. Before posting anything, remember that anything you post can be used against you and could potentially undermine your case. Use discretion and be extremely cautious with all social media engagement until your case is resolved. Every post or photo can, and will be used against you. Be mindful of what you post on social media because you may be surprised to find out who’s snooping on you.

If you have been injured in or around San Diego, call Eugene Bruno & Associates now at 1-888-BRUNO-88 (1-888-278-6688) for a free consultation with a San Diego injury attorney.

Posted in: Personal Injury