Facebook originally began as a way to communicate and stay in touch with friends. Today, it’s evolved into the preeminent social media site. Not only is it used between friends, but now it’s also being used by brands and businesses as a marketing and advertising tool. It’s also used by some companies to stay in touch with their customers and offer a new avenue of communication.
It should be no surprise then that law enforcement is also turning to Facebook for help, such as this one case in Morgan Hill, California. Detectives needed help in finding a burglar, so they uploaded his picture onto the department’s Facebook page. The result was more than they probably expected – within 48 hours, Colby Worsham, the burglar, turned himself in to the authorities.
Worsham was wanted in connection for burglary, larceny and fraudulent use of credit cards. Detectives used the power of social media – and the department’s Facebook followers responded. Worsham’s photo was shared 152 times. Police say Worsham clearly felt the pressure.
We’ve seen this before, and with the continued growth of social media, it’ll probably happen even more frequently. Burglars are not the brightest of the bunch – events like these make that evidently clear. Meanwhile, law enforcement continues to adapt to new trends and technologies to catch these criminals.
While social media has shown its merits, it can also be dangerous when used incorrectly. Your cyber security, and possibly even your home security, can be at risk if you’re not careful. 50 ex-burglars in the UK were surveyed and almost 80% of them said that burglars today are probably using Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare to choose their targets. CBS New York provided a list of social media safety tips that we’ve discussed before, but it’s worth mentioning the two main tips again: avoid giving away too much information and be wary of clicking on links.
Thanks to social media, we’re now more connected than ever; not only to our friends, but to celebrities, businesses, and even police departments. We have more information available to us than ever before, so why not use it to our advantage? Look to see if your local police department has a Facebook page or a Twitter account, and stay updated. Feel free to follow FrontPoint Security as well. We use Facebook, Twitter and Google+ to provide daily updates on all things home security. When used correctly, social media is a powerful tool. Who knows, you might just end up helping your police department catch a criminal.