In Australia, a couple have been served legal papers via social networking site Facebook.

In what's thought to be a world first, the Australian courts approved the online delivery method for the papers filed against the couple, who had defaulted on a $100,000 loan.

The Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court accepted that virtual method of serving the papers was permissible as the couple's Facebook accounts included their names, dates of birth and listed each other as friends.

Mark McCormack, a Canberra lawyer with his own Facebook account, said: "We believe it's certainly the first time in Australia... and we haven't heard of it being done anywhere internationally".