In Thomas Gagnon’s case, it sure can – and did. Unbeknownst to him, Mr. Gagnon’s ex-girlfriend received an email from him inviting her to join Google+. Unfortunately, Mr. Gagnon’s ex-girlfriend had a restraining order against him at the time. When she received the email, she complained to the authorities that Mr. Gagnon had violated his restraining order. Authorities agreed and arrested Mr. Gagnon, who was jailed before being released on bail.
However, Mr. Gagnon insists he never sent the email – he never authorized the email invitation, never consented to the invitation, and quite frankly, “has no idea how the invitation got sent.”*
According to Internet expert Bradley Shear of Bethesda, Md., Mr. Gagnon could very well be telling the truth. Google+ allows users to aggregate their contacts into various groups, and moving between groups can trigger Gmail to send automatic invitations to contacts to join Google+. Although Google could face serious liability for sending invitations without a user’s permission, the consequences can be very real (and immediate, like in Mr. Gagnon’s case) for the uneducated user.
Moral of the story: Consistently check your Internet settings and learn how certain invitations can be triggered. In this day and age, you can never be too careful with your privacy settings – especially when you’re in the middle of a domestic dispute or divorce.
If you are involved in a domestic dispute or divorce, having a knowledgeable, experienced divorce attorney by your side can prove to be invaluable. If you have any questions about your divorce or related issues, please contact our California Certified Family Law Specialists (as certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization). Lonich Patton Erlich Policastri’s attorneys have decades of experience handling complex Family Law proceedings and are happy to offer you a free half-hour consultation.
Please remember that each individual situation is unique and results discussed in this post are not a guarantee of future results. While this post may include legal issues, it is not legal advice. Use of this site does not create an attorney-client relationship.