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Women Sues Debt Collector Over FB Messages

Should Facebook be off-limits for debt collectors on the prowl? One Florida woman thinks so.

Melanie Beacham, of St. Petersburg, Fla., filed a complaint against MarkOne Financial, LLC, alleging that employees of MarkOne harassed her and her family members over Facebook to intimidate her into paying an alleged debt. A representative of MarkOne contacted Melanie’s sister and cousin through Facebook and a screen capture included in the complaint shows a message stating, “Please Have Melanie D Beacham call me” and the message included his phone number.

Although MarkOne declined comment because of pending litigation, the company stated that its policy is to use Facebook to locate the person when their profile is fully public and when he or she has not responded to requests through “conventional means”.

The legal issues surrounding the usage of Facebook in debt collection are somewhat vague because the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was written decades ago, long before the advent of social media.

Regardless of what kind of medium debt collectors use to reach consumers, they are prohibited from revealing information to third parties and cannot make false, deceptive, misleading or harassing representations.

Read the full story from ABC: Women Sues Debt Collector Over FB Messages.

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