Police in Cheshire are urging the public to think carefully about what they write when posting messages online.
The warning comes after officers launched an investigation into a number of malicious messages posted on social media sites following a recent planning application relating to a former Widnes Care Home.
Assistant Chief Constable Sarah Boycott said: “I want to remind all social media users to think carefully about what they are saying before posting messages online.
“There are a number of laws in place which cover social media; these laws include messages which could be seen to make credible threats of violence towards a person or damage to a property.
“Although you may believe your message is acceptable, other people may take offence, and you could face a large fine up to two years in prison if your message is deemed to have broken the law.
“I would like to reassure the public that we take all reports of malicious communications seriously, and we will take action.”
The investigation in relation to the Widnes care home messages is in its early stage and enquiries are currently on going.