Discussion Week 14

Rochelle M

What rights and responsibilities do you have to protect your privacy on the Internet?

What really is protected in today’s new media generation? Recent news articles have been writing about how even the tightest security settings on sites such as Facebook  can still be seen by those you may not what to see. Recently in the news arose a storys of how Insurance Companies have been looking at peoples Facebook to fight off insurance fraud.

Insurance Companies are checking out photos and things posted to Facebook’s to make sure no insurance fraud is happening. One example is a man’s insurance company was looking at his photos of him drinking a beer sitting on the beach. After viewing this the insurance company dropped him and stopped paying him his disability check for an at work injury.

Another case is a women who is now fighting the insurance company after her sick leave benefits were revoked because of photos that were on her Facebook. The women had taken a leave from work after being diagnosed with “major depression” but was cut off after photos were seen of her private Facebook of her having fun at her own birthday party.

How can we believe that anything is “private” any more. There is so much technology available to everyone these days that any one really, truly has access to EVERYTHING if they want. So I do not know if I can discuss this topic this week because I am unsure of what rights I have to protect my privacy on the Internet anymore…


Here is one case reported on ABC 7 Action News – Insurance Companies Look at Social Media Accounts to Fight Fraud


2 thoughts on “Discussion Week 14

  1. lorchuev says:

    While I get how the consumers would feel about the insurance company’s way of doing things, I also get why the insurance company would do that. Insurance fraud can be broken simply into stealing, so I get why the companies would want to make sure it’s genuine, but they have to make sure they have enough evidence to prove it’s a fraud.

    The first example you gave is pretty non-incriminating, and I don’t think they should’ve stopped paying him. Going to the beach usually signifies “I don’t have to work, and will be having a nice relaxing day,” so I do not know how they would link him drinking to getting hurt on the job later. However, the second example is a little more incriminating on the women, just because she was diagnosed with “major” depression. I can get why she would be having fun, it’s her birthday and she’s supposed to have fun, but just the fact that it was labeled “major” gives off the feeling that she should be depressed at all times. If she were diagnosed with just “depression,” I feel that she shouldn’t have had her benefits cut off.

    Anyways, I believe that you can always change your Facebook status and photos to “friends only,” or “only ______” or something. I do not know exactly how reliable this function is though, because can people still by-pass this function? Can someone still look if they have a good reason to? Like an insurance company?

    Good job on your post!

  2. rochellem5 says:

    I was looking into your last point Lor, and it said even with the most extreme privacy settings on your Facebook there are still ways around it. One example being if the insurance company or person you do not want seeing your information is friends with any of your friends your information is open to them as well… there are a few loop holes in the system which I believe should be confronted.

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