WAUSAU, Wi. (WAOW)– Social media is growing and users may not be as protected as they think.
Many may think their information is private when using a social media platform, but one information security expert says that’s not always the case.
Recently, a criminal case in Nebraska combined Facebook posts as evidence in the proceedings, and Dorothea Salo with UW-Madison said that’s nothing new.
Salo said law enforcement uses metadata from these apps to find the information they need. The most common metadata used by law enforcement is geolocation.
“Usage seems to be growing, types of data enforcement are increasing,” Salo said. “Law enforcement doesn’t necessarily have to ask social media directly, there are companies called data brokers that exist to buy back all that data…they frequently sell to law enforcement.”
Salo suggested that users be proactive in protecting their information.
“A lot of people understand that privacy policies mean your privacy is protected when it’s not,” Salo said. “Privacy policies actually explain in sometimes excruciating detail exactly how they will violate your privacy.”
Resources such as consumer reports help users create a personalized plan to protect their information.