COST EFFECTIVE DEFAMATION DEFENSE
Many corporate and individual clients are now facing internet defamation where anonymous posters are damaging their good name.
For many businesses, this defamation is ranking highly on Google searches involving and clients are reporting anywhere from 10% to 80% drops in revenue.
When the clients seek legal solutions, they are often incorrectly told
- Its Antonymous – Nothing Can Be Done: FALSE
- It very expensive (30-100K): FALSE
- Its Freedom Of Speech: OFTEN FALSE
Cyber Investigation Services, LLC helps its clients resolve these issues, quickly, and very cost effectively.
This page details everything you will need to know and outlines realistic, highly effective solutions.
GOALS OF THE PROCESS
If you are undergoing Internet defamation, then typically you have a few major goals:
PROVE ID OF ATTACKER
Usually, this is the most common goal of clients. Please note that this usually is a two stage process of some initial investigation work followed by gathering technical info AFTER litigation is filed. It is rare when you have enough information upfront to 100% positively prove who is behind your issue before subpoenas are issued.
REMOVE DAMAGE FROM INTERNET
Many times this defamatory material is seriously impacting business. If the litigation is done properly, then getting removal (possibly quickly) is quite possible.
STOP FUTURE ATTACKS
Historically, naming the attacker and then serving them with litigation is one of the most effective methods of getting a permanent stop to your problem.
COMPENSATION FOR DAMAGES
While major compensation is rarely the goal of most people facing defamation issues, getting compensated for real costs is almost always high on their priority list.
HOW WE HELP
We can dramatically reduce your cost and time involved in this litigation
Since only a handful of attorneys specialize in defamation, and consequently their fees are very high, internet defamation lawsuits have been beyond the reach of most companies.
However, we offer very affordable services that then allow non-specialized attorneys to be able to handle your case with only a few hours of their time. If you have a regular attorney, we suspect that they will be able to easily handle this for you with our help.
WHAT WE DO HELP YOU THROUGH THIS PROCESS
With our litigation support services, Cyber Investigation Services implements 3 major phases on your behalf thus greatly reducing your time and costs:
For these type lawsuits (typically John Doe as explained below), the courts are requiring more and more evidence to file these cases and to then allow attorneys to pierce the veil of privacy by issuing subpoenas. We use a multiple of techniques, from web traps, to IP traces, to witness interviews, to email tracking, and many other techniques to gather this initial evidence needed to move forward. Many attorney “cowboys” are getting shut down very quickly when they try to file John Doe lawsuits without this key step.
DRAFT PLEADING PREP
Since most attorneys have never been involved in internet defamation cases, they really don’t know how to structure the complaint that is to be filed with the courts to initiate the lawsuit. There are some very specific issues that have to be addressed that cause many legal teams to stumble including jurisdiction, gathered supporting evidence, temporary injunction requests, final injunction requests, and a slew of privacy issues. Given the volume of this type of work that we do, we can provide you with EXACTLY what is needed — very cost effectively. You and your attorney will receive the draft pleadings document in a form that should require very minimal clean up to now be ready to file in the court. If this one step is done by an inexperienced person, legal bills and issues can accumulate rapidly.
It is rare when you have all the evidence you need prior to filing an internet defamation lawsuit. The key remaining pieces, and the ultimate naming of the individual, will come from the request of information from key places like Google, Internet service providers, web sites, etc. Courts are always balancing privacy concerns against the plaintiffs need for information. As part of our documentation package, we prepare all the technical subpoenas that your attorney will need: as a note, we get hired by many law firms to create their subpoenas when it relates to Internet issues. Other issues may also arise where subpoenas need to be domesticated in order to be accepted (We can provide this service at an extra cost).
SUBPOENA DATA ANALYSIS (PRICED AS NEEDED)
The information requested via the subpoenas is technical in nature and may be very easy to understand or may require specialized knowledge. To keep the process very cost effective for you, we do not price in any time for this upfront but rather make our service available to you on an as needed basis at our regular hourly rate.
STRATEGY PLANNING (PRICED AS NEEDED)
As your case unfolds and if issues arise, you or your attorney may require extra help. We are here for you as needed and simply bill this out at our normal hourly rate rather than “prebilling” you for something you may not need.
WHAT IS A JOHN DOE SUIT?
Many clients (and even their attorneys) are unfamiliar with a very commonly used tool in Internet defamation: The John/Jane Doe lawsuit.
Frequently, you may not have enough evidence to actually name the defendant prior to filing. In this case, “John Doe” is named as the defendant, temporarily, until further evidence is obtained via subpoenas. At that stage, then the lawsuit is changed to reflect the actual defendant and then the defendant is served appropriate notices.
In many cases, the client “knows” who is behind their defamation issue but “knowing” & “proving” are two very separate issues. One of our specialties is helping your attorney design cases that leave little room for legal defense.
Below is a typically summary of the steps that happen in one of these cases:
- Initial Investigation/Evidence
- Pleading & Subpoena Prep
- Filing “John Doe” Lawsuit
- Issuing Subpoenas & Gathering Evidence
- Review Of Returned Subpoena Evidence
- Naming Defendant & Modifying “John Doe”
- Demand Letter For Settlement
- Settlement & Permanent Injunctions (90% typically)
- Court Hearing (rare)
The vast majority of these cases simply amount to an exercise in paperwork. By using our services, you can substantially lower your costs and increase your odds of success.
FIGHT VS FOLD
Historically, 90% of these cases settle rapidly after the defendant is named. Why? Because the person thought they were anonymous and had zero chance of getting caught. When caught red handled, it is often much more cost effective for them to settle with you than to fight you in court (of course this will depend upon your demands for settlement).
You can almost always tell in advance when somebody is likely to fight versus fold. Typically the fighters are being very open and bold about who their real ID is almost seem to be inviting a fight. However, if someone is carefully trying to hide their identity, their is a very good chance they will fold when named in a lawsuit.
Before we take on your case, we review to see if we believe you are likely to get a good result. Typically, the following outcomes are possible and we won’t know yours until we are well into the case.
EVERYTHING AS PLANNED
In this case, you name the individual, get relief via court order to remove their damaging information, and get financial compensation. Ask us and we will be happy to “estimate” the odds of this outcome for you in advance.
Many our investigations involve also letting the person know that litigation is moving forward. This can result in their rapid removal of info if done properly and if evidence has been gathered in advance (simple “cease & desist” approaches rarely work on the Internet). If this happens, then you could stop the process and not file suit or still continue forward.
ANONYMIZED IP ADDRESS
Since many Internet cases rely on IP addresses, then it is always possible that no real person can gets named. In this case, frequently the courts will still provide relief by allowing the injunction to remove the material since this person is clearly hiding themselves (as our evidence will show). We will be happy to discuss the odds of this happening with you in your specific situation. It is possible the court wont allow this but this is by far the exception and not the rule.
OUR MOST COMMON QUESTION
By far, our most common question is “what is the odds of my case being successful”? This will depend on many factors, and also will depend upon what you consider as a success. For some clients, success is only achieved if the person is named and served. For others, it means if the damaging material is removed from the Internet. Before we take on your case and collect any money, we will be reviewing the details to determine this answer for ourselves (we turn low odds cases). Feel free to ask us what we have found in that initial look.