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I live in the UK, and I constantly see scams on Facebook such as:

  • "£300pm house. I live abroad, so you will need to send me the money, and I will send you the keys in the post," or

  • "Free iPad for the first 100 workers,"

and many more.

What does the law say regarding sharing the personal information of scammers? What type of details can I publicly share?

I would like to share the following information:

  • the full name of the scammer;
  • the age of the scammer;
  • the location of the scammer;
  • the email account used for the scam; and
  • photos used for the scam.

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  • Who's asking for £260, and for what? Sounds like another scam. Alternatively, if this is a fee for legal advice from a registered member of the Law Society, that's going to give you something you can fall back on in a way that the words of someone on the internet wouldn't. – ItWasLikeThatWhenIGotHere Feb 18 at 9:26
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    you are right, and yes its for a legal advice. but there might be someone on the internet who already has found an answer to my question or is more knowledgable on the subject of law in regards to this subject and is willing to share his experience / knowledge. – Marek Prymula Feb 18 at 9:28
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If you're sharing the specific details of the scam (for example re-posting a copy of the posting or e-mail) and expressing your opinion that it's a scam, you're unlikely to encounter problems.

Problems are likely to arise if you post anything that was not in the original communication - for example if you were to search on a name or e-mail address, and post other information (social media user names, photographs, physical addresses - even approximate ones) based on what you found.

It sounds like you've already considered the possibility that the name and e-mail posted might not relate to the person who posted the scam. The idea that you might be committing libel against a third party by claiming they did something they didn't is worth considering further - particularly if you're alleging criminal activity.

If you link details that were not previously linked, you could also be looking at data protection implications even if you are absolutely certain of their veracity - it's worth bearing in mind that scammers are Natural Persons too. If you were to collate details - for example in a website - these implications become significant.

There's also the question of how you distribute information, which might be relevant even if you're just saying "I saw this posting on that website and I think it's a scam" - a lot of spam consists of warnings about potential scams. If you're posting on someone else's website, there may be terms and conditions to consider.

Confirming with a professional lawyer that the specifics of what you're proposing are legal would give you something to cover your back - but your £260 could also get you the answer that what you're thinking is best avoided.

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If you have personal details of the scammer, hand them to the police. But it is very very unlikely that the personal details are those of the scammer. So don’t even think about publishing anything online because the innocent person you libelled may take costly action against you. Personal experience: I once got a scam email that had myself as the sender.

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