Social Media, Mobile Devices Increasingly Factor Into Lawsuits

There’s been a surge in litigation related to social media and mobile devices, according to a report from staffing firm Robert Half Legal.

Robert Half Legal spoke to lawyers across the country, and found that, while social media sites and mobile devices offer expanded communication and flexible work options, they are also causing a spike in litigation.

More than half (52 percent) of lawyers recently interviewed by Robert Half Legal said they’ve seen an increase in lawsuits linked to images or information found on social media and mobile devices.

And more than one-quarter (27 percent) of respondents reported a rise in cases related to data on personal mobile devices that employees used for work purposes.

“With millions of people sharing details about their personal lives and professional activities online, data stored on social media networks and mobile devices are increasingly relevant to litigation,” said Charles Volkert, senior district president of Robert Half Legal.

“Electronic evidence retrieved during discovery, including emails, tweets, text messages and photos, as well as GPS and web browsing history, is often enough to make or break a case,” Volkert said.

Volkert added that as employees increasingly use personal laptops, smartphones and tablets for work-related matters, there are inherent risks to the organization.

“Policies regulating the use of mobile devices and social media are an essential component of a corporate security and reputation management program. Guidelines should be regularly reviewed and communicated to employees to protect confidential information and guard against data leaks and cyber threats,” he said.

For workers, the message is: be careful what you post, tweet, send, etc.

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