Social Media Investigations
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Social media platforms are a gift to the world of intelligence-gathering. Because cyberspace is the farthest thing from real life, individuals often feel a false sense of security when it comes to their online profiles. Whether it’s a sense of privacy or anonymity, the amount of information people post on their social media pages—whether it’s made private or not—is still open to probe by qualified, licensed private investigators like those on our team at Lauth Investigations International.
While social media platforms are often thought of as extra-curricular or superfluous to a person’s real day-to-day life, the content shared on these platforms can provide crucial context for a person’s interests, judgement, or character, and these details can be hyper-relevant to all investigation types
In addition to our team of private investigators, Lauth also employs a team of intelligence analysts who have the tool chest and skillsets to comb a Subject’s social media presence across all major platforms, including but never limited to:
- Dating sites
- Personal blogs
- Personal websites
Social media scrapes are not as simple as opening a person’s public social media profile and scrolling through their timeline. For instance, a Subject might have a performative profile in which they denote themselves by their true name and public identity, but have a highly-cultivated image that is visible to the world. Profiles like these likely omit posts including inappropriate photos, or questionable interests and private activities, such as drug use or special interests or affiliations the Subject would rather keep within a tailored online social circle.
Identifying and scraping one social media profile is also not a comprehensive picture of the Subject’s online presence. Our intelligence analysts have the ability to identify all of the social media profiles associated with a Subject using only a few pieces of identifying information. Once all profiles have been identified, our analysts can compile full social media dossiers on the Subject detailing relevant items.
Social media scrapes:
Activity – Analysts can document approximate rate of use regarding each platform, the general nature of posts made to those platforms, and document specific items that are relevant to the investigation.
Interactions – Any and all relevant interactions on the platform can be noted for purposes of establishing a Subject’s social circle, like their personal and professional affiliations, and establish proof of a relationship between two or more individuals.
Photos – Photographic evidence of all kinds, whether they be snapshots or video, is typically invaluable in any type of investigation as an objective piece of evidence. Platforms like Twitter and Instagram can be treasure troves of useful photographic evidence, particularly on perceivably private accounts where the Subject believes they have anonymity.
Social affiliations and special interests – Particularly in corporate settings, a person’s social affiliations and special interests can be relevant to their value as an employee. Some employers may not wish to associate their business with individuals who are affiliated with radical social interest groups or polarizing ideologies. Interactions with social media groups or pages may be documented on the Subject’s page, and our analysts can prepare summaries of these groups or pages for the client’s contextual understanding.
Location data – A Subject’s whereabouts is one of the most common pieces of data in a social media scrape. With platforms ubiquitously offering location tags or data to accompany a person’s posts, it’s simple to document the physical location of their movements if they’ve published this information on social media. Our analysts can even compile a map of all relevant locations found on a Subject’s social media profiles.
Possible criminal activity – Covert social media profiles in particular are the ideal place for a Subject to post about questionable or illegal activity, such as drug use, seditious activity, or criminal activity. Our analysts can compile text posts, photographs, and videos of this activity, and provide appropriate context regarding relevance to the investigation.
Applications of social media scrapes:
- Corporate culture audits
- Background investigations
- Personal & corporate litigation
- Employee & executive misconduct
- Death investigations
- Genealogical investigations
- Theft & fraud
- Violence & threat assessment