Video: Privacy Issues on Facebook Are Here to Stay

Posted March 22, 2012 in Internet Law Social Networks by Kate Stafford

“I mostly use it to connect.”

“I wish I didn’t have to use it so much, because you do get kind of addicted to it, it’s the only way my generation communicates now.”

Facebook has become the internet playground for nearly 750 million users, but along with the fun comes the perils of “oversharing.”

Washington, DC, area-lawyer Eric Menhart tells us, “If you put it on Facebook you should expect that it is 100% unequivocally public. There are a few things that Facebook will do to effectively protect your privacy, there are certain settings you can put into effect on the site, but at the end of the day, if you put that information online, there’s very little you can do to get it off.”

“It’s just like the toothpaste coming out of the tube.”

 Be Aware of What You Post

Users have been facing ongoing privacy issues, especially from employers. Many employers now check Facebook for information on potential new hires and some are even demanding your password.

Menhart says, “If an employer finds out, for example you were drinking as a sixteen year old in high school 15 years ago, there’s nothing Eric Menhartyou’re going to do about it, so you have to be very careful about what you post.”

What recourse do you have if you feel your privacy has been breached? “The legal routes are very limited, unlike privacy measures for medical or financial records.”

“The bottom line is don’t put it on Facebook or Twitter or anywhere else for that matter if you don’t want it to be accessible to everyone in the world,” Menhart concludes.

One thing is for certain, Facebook and other social media sites are here to stay. Read the terms of service before agreeing to them and don’t post anything you could get sued – or worse – for.