For many people sending messages, posting comments, and updating statuses on Facebook is for fun. For some local law enforcement, it's business.
"It can actually help us solve crimes, prevent crimes, give us intelligence of movements of suspects that we're following, such as postings about where they are at, where they're going, and where they're going to be," says Captain Al Sibert.
He says criminals like to brag about what they've done or what they're going to do on Facebook. "It helps in prosecution, because a lot of times they're actually confessing to the crimes. They're posting information that only the criminal would know. So when it comes to the prosecution, it makes life a whole lot easier. It's basically a confession."
Karen Negron is a Warren County Resource Officer. She says a lot of kids bully each other on Facebook. She has a Facebook herself. If she's friends with them, she can get a heads up and intervene before the first bell rings and gloves come off. "If I can see it on my Facebook, then I kind of address it there. I let administrators know that we need to speak to the children before it becomes a bigger problem during the day," Negron explained.
When Negron showed me her Facebook, she found a nasty conversation between two girls within a matter of minutes. The comment reads, "Ha, I love you girl, funny that the b* that said this liked this."
If you post something and you don't make the post public, officers can not use the information in a court of law. You are protected by the Fourth Amendment. If you make the posts public, it's something law enforcement can use.
"If the page is kept private then obviously we are subject to the requirements of getting a search warrant or a court order to get those postings from the individuals account," says Sibert. He says the best thing about using Facebook is preventing crimes before they even happen.