MIAMI (CBS4) — Social media has provided it’s users with an easy way to share pictures and status updates with family members, friends, and coworkers on a day-to-day basis, but they aren’t the only ones you’re sharing your personal life with.
Kurt Nordland never thought that the pictures of him enjoying a beer with his friends would land him in big trouble with the insurance company paying him his “Workers Comp Benefits.” He was dropped from his policy soon after the pictures were posted.
“I was extremely surprised they could just go on your Facebook and pull these pictures out,” Nordland said.
Experts like to refer to this new trend as “Social Media Snooping”.
Insurance companies have the ability to see every social media update you make depending on your privacy settings.
If insurance companies believe that you’re involved in risky business you could end up paying a premium. You can also face coverage cancellation if they think you’re faking an injury.
Kurt Norland’s attorney says that social media snooping has become the “norm” in lawsuits.
“If they find anything that is embarrassing or anything they can use to paint you in a bad light, that’s when it shows up in the case.”
The Insurance Information Institute reports that companies monitor their customer’s social media pages to make sure they are not involved in fraud. This ultimately makes everyone’s premium more expensive.
Insurance companies are starting to hire more private investigators like Steve Davis to investigate people making suspicious claims. Davie admits that social media accounts are one of the first places he checks, and so far he has had a lot of luck. He’s even found pictures of a guy pulling kids around on an ATV while collecting disability insurance.
“If you’re going to claim that you have a severe injury and you post pictures of you doing something crazy, then shame on you! You shouldn’t have those pictures on there, and shame on you for committing insurance fraud,” the Private Investigator declared.
Insurance companies say they will continue to monitor your social media accounts, and insist that if you have nothing to hide, then you should have nothing to worry about.