TSLF Employment Blog

Guidelines for Federal Employee Social Media Use

Whenever someone begins working for the federal government, new guidelines and expectations must be followed to protect private information and the best interests of American citizens. While this can frustrate federal employees, many guidelines apply for individuals who want to post online and utilize social media platforms. But navigating expectations in this environment can be challenging, especially if you are used to frequently posting to social media. If you want to understand better how to use social media as a federal employee, we can help.

Avoiding legal issues with the federal government is essential, especially for employees who want to maintain their job security. The employment lawyers from The Spiggle Law Firm have extensive experience with legal matters, including federal and state government cases. We serve clients in Virginia state and Washington D.C., meaning we are familiar with federal governmental expectations. If you need assistance with legal matters involving your employment, we may be able to provide valuable information and support.

Can You Use Social Media As a US Federal Employee?

If you are a federal employee of the US, you may not be sure whether you can use social media at all. However, we would like to clarify that most federal employees are allowed to post online and use social media accounts, at least to an extent. While you may not have all the freedoms you would typically have if you were not a federal employee, you can still share pieces of your life online.

Your ability to use social media is not as limited as you might think, but you must exercise a great deal of care before posting pictures, comments, or text posts. You could get in serious legal trouble if you post certain information online, so we recommend getting as familiar as possible with social media policies. We can also provide brief breakdowns of a few guidelines to send you in the right direction.

Top Guidelines For Federal Employees Who Want to Use Social Media

If you are a federal employee and want to post online in any capacity, we can help you better understand some best practices before you hit “post.”

Don’t Post During Work Hours

As a federal employee, we strongly encourage you to avoid posting online during work hours. While this generally applies to most employees, as you should be focusing on work rather than scrolling through social media, this is especially important for government workers. This lowers the risks of accidentally sharing sensitive information that should not be shared with the general public while also respecting the privacy of coworkers and helping you stay in good standing with your employer.

Avoid Using Work Equipment to Access Your Personal Accounts

Personal use of work computers and other available equipment is an incorrect use of resources and is generally not in the best interest of United States citizens. While this may be obvious to some, we encourage you to avoid using your work equipment to access your personal accounts. Instead, only access personal accounts on your own electronics.

Only Discuss Publicly Available Information

Sensitive information that is not publicly available should never be shared on your personal social media accounts, so we recommend you only ever discuss publicly available information online. Protecting private information is essential to protecting the safety and the best interest of all American citizens.

Review the OPM Social Media Policy

The United States Office of Personnel Management, or OPM, has a detailed social media policy that we recommend all federal employees review carefully. This provides a great deal of information about what you should and should not do on your social media accounts as a federal employee, specifically because you could be perceived as a government representative.

Involved in Legal Matters? Work With The Spiggle Law Firm For Assistance

If you are facing legal matters with employment, you can benefit from working with an Alexandria employment lawyer from The Spiggle Law Firm. Our lawyers have experience working with federal and state laws, managing cases involving unpaid wages, and assisting clients from all walks of life. We invite you to contact our team if you need assistance.

You can reach out to us by calling (202) 980-3857 or completing our contact form at your earliest convenience, whichever is most accessible. We have a “Same Page Guarantee,” dedicating ourselves to understanding your legal circumstances as well as we can. We also have a proven process for improving client legal leverage, improving client satisfaction and success rates dramatically. Our team looks forward to working with you.

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