In less than ten years, Social Media have become an integral part of almost every person who is using the internet. The expansion of these websites was fast and unpredictable, and so were the repercussions of joining them and using them to share private information with others. For most of the Social Media Era, most people did not know what the privacy settings were on their accounts, and never read any terms and conditions. Until it became an issue in the news, nobody had noticed the paragraph on Facebook's terms saying that they own anything you post on their website. Social Media websites fall into many different categories and on September 2014, Wikipedia had 205 Social Media websites listed, not including dating websites.
As a result of over-sharing, our exposure has increased exponentially and people that we do not want find out about our personal life, habits, our friends and family. It is a fact that most recruiters now use Social Media to screen applicants and judge them on their social behavior rather than their CV. In 2013, a survey in the US showed that 1 in 5 divorces are fueled by Facebook and other social media websites. And without anyone knowing it, a company called Profile Engine, copied 600 million Facebook profiles a few years ago, and set up its own website, a cheap clone of Facebook. The two websites not working together any more, this means that your profile may be public on Profile Engine, even if your Facebook settings are to strict privacy or you even removed your profile.
Investigating social media evidence is as multi-dimensional task. It involves research online, on active and cached pages, as well as recovery of evidence from computers, tables and mobile phones. Recovered evidence has to be put into perspective and then establish social connections to trace activities and interactions between users.
All in all, social media forensics is becoming a new domain in digital forensics.
Strathclyde Forensics is constantly following developments that help us stay ahead from competition and of offenders.
Contact us to discuss in further details how we can help you.