In the UK, law enforcement agencies may obtain evidence from social media accounts or other online sources, but they must do so in accordance with the law and obtain proper authorization.
Under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA), law enforcement agencies are required to obtain a warrant or court order before accessing the content of communications on social media accounts or other online sources. This includes messages, photos, videos, and other information that is stored or transmitted over the internet.
The use of social media evidence in criminal investigations has become increasingly common in the UK. Police may use social media to identify suspects, gather evidence of criminal activity, and corroborate witness statements. However, the admissibility of social media evidence in court depends on the circumstances in which it was obtained and the reliability of the evidence.
It is important to note that individuals have a right to privacy under UK law, and law enforcement agencies must respect these rights when obtaining evidence. Any evidence obtained through illegal means, such as hacking into social media accounts or intercepting communications without proper authorization, would be inadmissible in court and may lead to criminal charges against the officers involved.