NEW YORK CITY – Sept. 13, 2018 – BIA, a leading national eDiscovery and digital forensics provider, announced today that it is now offering a new online portal for its popular social media discovery (SMD) services, allowing its clients to investigate more quickly and easily the validity of insurance claims. Publicly available social media posts are routinely used as evidence in criminal and civil litigation, particularly injury, insurance fraud and medical malpractice matters, and BIA’s new online portal is designed to make the discovery and acquisition of that evidence more accessible to all legal professionals.
BIA’s fully secure and encrypted Social Media Discovery Portal allows users to easily and securely begin a new SMD investigation by providing the information needed to kick it off in an easy-to-use online portal, while ensuring all sensitive data is protected and in compliance with industry and governmental regulations. BIA’s process collects data from social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Tumblr, as well as other websites across the internet.
The entire process is guided and overseen by licensed private investigators, digital forensics professionals and attorneys, ensuring that data is collected and preserved in a way to make it defensible and admissible in court. The new portal, which has been in testing with select clients for several months, is now generally available to the public.
“Since launching this new service earlier this year, our team has already handled hundreds of new social media discovery cases, which has allowed us to hone our process and put together the right mix of personnel and technology to ensure we can quickly capture relevant information,” said BIA President and CEO Brian Schrader. “Because we’re able to keep our costs low, there isn’t a large expense for insurance companies, though the rewards can be huge if our analysis shows a claim is fraudulent.”
Jason Park, senior vice president of digital forensic services at BIA, cites one lawsuit that demonstrates the potential of BIA’s process. A plaintiff in a worker’s compensation case had claimed to have life-altering pain and suffering from an on-the-job Achilles tendon injury. Using social media discovery, investigators and forensic experts discovered that she was posting images on social media from exotic vacations to Bali and Australia, where she was doing intense physical activities such as climbing waterfalls. As a result of this evidence, her claim was thrown out.
“If you’re an insurance claims adjuster or attorney, and you’re going to a deposition without a social media discovery done on the opponent or the plaintiff, you’re only going in with half the story,” Park said. “Our social media discovery service has the potential to save an insurance company millions of dollars in claims.”
BIA’s experts use a variety of tools and databases available only to private investigators to expand searches throughout a given individual’s social networks. The company’s technology captures social media posts as well as all related metadata, using a hashing algorithm on the components to prove that they haven’t been altered and help ensure evidentiary integrity and admissibility. To provide clients an added layer of confidence, BIA’s advisors can provide expert testimony to verify the authenticity of the data, the process and the analysis in court.
“Because BIA has certified forensic experts, licensed attorneys and licensed private investigators all working together, our social media discovery provides a well-rounded and comprehensive investigation and analysis, which we believe sets us apart,” Park said. “When combined with our automated process and secure technology, our clients can be confident in the quality of the information.”
As an industry pioneer, BIA continues to set the standard for reliable, innovative and cost-effective eDiscovery services. Its customer-first focus has resulted in countless innovations copied widely across the industry today. From technical innovations like truly remote data collections and the first cloud-based, end-to-end eDiscovery platform to service revolutions like reusing data and coding across matters and hiring dedicated, full-time employees for document review, BIA consistently stands at the leading edge of the industry. Founded by legal and technology professionals, BIA provides the entire spectrum of eDiscovery services – including attorney document review – with minimal disruption to its clients’ daily business operations. To learn more, visit BIA at www.biaprotect.com or on Twitter at @biaprotect.