1) Let us run the investigation as soon as possible!
Why? Once we have collected all of an individual’s public posts and mentions across the web, we have them preserved with metadata before they are altered or deleted. We can also later prove spoliation should the party alter or delete any posts that we have preserved in our system. While it is possible to find posts that have been deleted, they will no longer have metadata attached. We frequently find entire profiles removed after originally collecting the information. Once the data is gone, it’s gone. Get it quickly if there’s any chance you might need to admit it into evidence.
2) Collect as much information about the individual or plaintiff as possible.
We highly recommend starting with a background check and we can conduct those for you if needed. The more information we have, the more search terms and data we have to qualify accounts as the correct person and find information about them across the web. Ideally, it’s helpful to have Name, Alias, Addresses, Email, Employers, Known Associates (especially family members), Education, Birth Date. This is even more important when you have someone with a more common name. We have an information sheet we will ask you to fill out with as much data as you have on the person.
3) Continue monitoring the person.
While historic reports are probably the most important component of any investigation, because they provide data before a suit or claim was filed but after the incident, it’s important to continue to monitor the individual throughout the case or investigation. We often find plaintiff deaths unknown by the attorneys, new arrests, new activity (travel, races, etc.) despite claiming injury, statements about the case and more. Some firms choose to monitor individuals regularly every month or every other month, while other attorneys may run a historic report and then another right before deposition or trial.
4) Share information about the case.
This helps us know the types of information we are looking for. We can highlight any information that may be relevant to the case to help reduce your review time of the information. All information shared with our staff is completely confidential.
Ready to run your first social media and web investigation? Give us a call at 317-721-8660 or email lmettler AT socialmediainvestigation.com.