If unauthenticated evidence is admitted into the court's record, and makes a defendant’s charge more probable, that defendant’s Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment rights to life and liberty have been violated. Social media evidence, due to the ease of hacking and catfishing, can be unreliable, thus Maryland and Texas have led the way, with two respective approaches, on how to handle such evidence. Maryland, with its proscribed three authentication methods, has a less trusting view of social media, and realizes the dangers wrongfully entered evidence may have on a defendant’s due process. Alternatively, Texas has not heighten scrutiny on social media evidence that can easily be falsified and hacked, leaving the possibility that the record could include unauthentic evidence that leads to a conviction, contrary to due process. With the ever-changing internet, courts must shift their views and procedures in order to protect defendant's constitutional freedoms.
You Can't Trust Everything on the Internet: A Look Into Texas' and Maryland's Approach of Social Media Authentication,
Cath. U. J. L. & Tech
Available at: https://scholarship.law.edu/jlt/vol30/iss1/6