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NJ FBI Subpoenas for Facebook and Instagram Account Data

NJ FBI Subpoenas: Everything You Need To Know About FBI Investigations Through Instagram and Facebook Accounts

The internet is an amazing tool that enriches our lives in many ways. However, it’s also a tool that can be used to commit crimes, which is why the FBI has dedicated more and more of its resources towards investigating online activity. One method they use quite often is the subpoenaing of social media accounts like Facebook and Instagram. If you are facing an FBI subpoena for your account data, it’s important that you take swift action to protect yourself.

What Are Social Media Subpoenas and Why Do They Matter?

When facing an FBI subpoena, it’s essential that you take it very seriously. These subpoenas are usually issued when the FBI suspects a person of being involved in some sort of federal crime. Since social media provides a wealth of information about a person’s life, it can be a treasure trove for investigators looking to build a case against someone.

It’s also important to remember that once your account data has been subpoenaed by the FBI, there is no way to get it back. Therefore, if you believe you may have incriminating information on your social media profiles, it’s essential that you contact an experienced defense attorney as soon as possible.

How Do Facebook And Instagram Work With The FBI?

If the FBI decides to issue a subpoena for your social media data, they will typically send the request directly to Facebook or Instagram (which are owned by the same company). Both companies have policies in place about how they handle federal investigations.

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Specifically, both companies state that they will comply with appropriate requests made by law enforcement agencies such as the FBI. In general, these requests come in one of three forms:

– A search warrant
– A court order
– A subpoena

Once Facebook or Instagram receives one of these orders from the FBI, they will first verify its authenticity before complying with it fully. This means that if your account data has been subpoenaed, there is a good chance that the FBI has some other evidence against you as well.

What Kinds of Offenses Are Investigated With Social Media Subpoenas?

There are numerous crimes that the FBI can investigate using social media account data. However, they tend to focus on federal offenses that carry significant penalties. These can include:

– National security threats
– Terrorism
– Drug trafficking
– Human trafficking
– Child pornography

Let’s take a closer look at these different offenses and how the FBI uses social media account data to investigate them.

National Security Threats

National security is one of the top priorities for federal law enforcement agencies like the FBI. Consequently, they take any potential threats to national security very seriously. If you are suspected of engaging in activities that could harm national security, the FBI may issue a subpoena for your social media accounts in order to gather more information about you.


Terrorist organizations often use social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram to communicate with each other and plan attacks. The FBI takes this very seriously and will use any means necessary to investigate potential terrorist threats. In fact, many high-profile terrorism cases have relied heavily on social media data as evidence.

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Drug Trafficking

Drug trafficking is a serious crime that can result in long prison sentences and heavy fines. The FBI uses social media account data in drug trafficking investigations in order to locate suspects, monitor their activity, and build a case against them. Since many drug traffickers use social media platforms to communicate with each other about their illegal activities or even advertise drugs for sale, it can be an important source of evidence for investigators.

Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is an especially insidious crime because it exploits vulnerable people for profit. Sadly, many human trafficking rings operate right under the noses of law enforcement officials without being detected. Social media can be used by traffickers to locate targets, communicate with them, and advertise their illicit services. The FBI uses social media account data to track down traffickers and build cases against them.

Child Pornography

Perhaps the most heinous crime that the FBI investigates using social media account data is child pornography. Creating, distributing, or even viewing child pornography is a major crime that carries severe penalties. The FBI actively monitors social media platforms for any evidence of child pornography activity, and if they suspect someone of being involved in this kind of crime, they will use all available methods to obtain the evidence they need.

What To Do If You Are Facing An FBI Subpoena For Your Social Media Account Data

If you have been notified that your Facebook or Instagram account information has been subpoenaed by the FBI, it’s important to remain calm but take action quickly. Your first step should be to contact an experienced defense attorney who can help you understand your rights in this situation.

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Given the wide range of offenses that can be investigated using social media account data and the potential severity of the penalties involved in these crimes, it’s critical that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side who can help protect your rights throughout the investigation process.


Subpoenas issued by the FBI for social media account data from platforms like Facebook and Instagram represent a very serious matter. These subpoenas are usually requested when someone is suspected of committing federal crimes like national security threats, terrorism, drug trafficking, human trafficking or even Child Pornography.
It’s very important that anyone facing such subpoenas contact an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible in order to protect their rights and make sure they have a strong legal ally on their side during what can be a challenging time.

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