Often times, claimants get word that they are being investigated, or their lawyers may tell them to be cautious with their choices on social media. One day, their Facebook profile is visible and searchable; and the next day, it’s gone. In an effort to stay hidden, claimants may change their names and contact information on Facebook, thus making the search for their profile or the original link null and void.
This does not necessarily mean that your subject is no longer on Facebook. They may still have an active profile, but have changed the name, vanity name, and/or email address that was originally associated with the profile.
ICU will be implementing a new policy and procedure while conducting Internet Profile Reports. The staff at ICU has found a way to identify the original profile id number that had been assigned to the profile when it was created. Your claimant can change all of their contact information and even use the name “John Smith” in an effort to throw us off the scent. Fortunately, the Facebook id number associated with a profile can NEVER change, and we are electing to provide that link to you so you never have to deal with losing your subject’s social media presence again.
Dean Smith’s Profile with vanity name in link:
Dean Smith’s Profile with Facebook id number in link:
We’ll let you see for yourself.
Facebook pages, such as for a band, business, etc., also have Facebook id numbers and can be retrieved in the same manner.
ICU Investigation’s Page with vanity name in link:
ICU Investigation’s Page with Facebook id number in link:
PLEASE NOTE: A Facebook user can only change the username/vanity name (the name that shows up at the end of the link to their profile) ONCE during the lifetime of the profile, but they may change the name that displays on their profile as much as they want. This is why we are stressing the importance of capturing the profile id number while we can, before the claimant changes any of their information.
The above page can be accessed by going to General Account settings while signed into Facebook. You will be able to see where the name, username/vanity name, email address, etc. can be altered.
ALSO NOTE: The only way your subject can erase this information is to completely delete the profile, and as we know from experience, most would rather not (their 1,472 friends and 2,609 tagged pictures will be lost in cyber space!).