Sharing too much information on social media can put you, your family and friends, and your home at risk. You may have read it here or heard it elsewhere, but it’s so important we’re going to repeat it: sharing personal information on social media puts you at risk.
Brad Morehead of the Huffington Post highlighted these risks associated with oversharing on social media in a recent article. Specifically, Morehead noted that it’s not only travel plan announcements that are exposing you, but many other posts/tweets/shares that seem harmless on the surface are unintentionally providing burglars with valuable information.
In the article, Morehead listed six common social media shares that put you at risk. We know the importance of cyber security, so we had to chime in with our thoughts. Here are our key takeaways from the article.
The Vacation Countdown
“Five days until Cancun!” is certainly exciting for everyone involved but to some of your followers, an update like this one could be an indication that no one will be home for that period of time. This may not only lead to a break-in, but your home could potentially become host to a party or even squatters.
Not everyone has to know that you’re about to go on vacation, especially on a public platform such as Facebook or Twitter. You shouldn’t rely on privacy settings either, as a friend may unknowingly share your news with others.
While your location may be an especially cool one, check-ins also tell followers that you’re out of the house and if you’re tagging your friends, you may be putting them at risk as well.
The big thing here that is that if you tag your friends, you’re also putting them at risk. Watching the opening release of a big movie or dining at a fancy restaurant are fun events that you want to share with everyone right away, but it can wait until you get home.
Pictures are a great way to document damaged homes for insurance but those are the only eyes that should see that your house is in such a condition.
Holes, broken windows and other damages indicate weaknesses in your home that a burglar could use. Severe damage could also send the message that the home is vacant.
Sharing a photo of your living space displays whatever valuables you may have lying around.
Sharing a photo of a room also provides a potential blueprint for any burglar that comes across it. The image could help a burglar get an idea of the layout of your home, allowing them to plan out a route.
Visiting family is a great way to spend the holidays but if you post your plans on social networks, you could be at risk for a break in.
Similar to announcing your vacation plans, posting where you’re going for the holidays puts your home at risk. The holidays usually mean traveling, leaving homes unattended for long periods of time. They also mean gifts and presents, giving a burglar even more incentive to break into your home.
Public RSVPs to parties, school events, Evites (even only to people you think you know), and even weddings have been known to give intruders cause to target your home.
Public invites on Facebook are displayed to everyone and accepting one is an announcement that you will be out of your home at a specific time and date. The type of event doesn’t matter to burglars, as they’re not afraid to rob homes while the owners are attending weddings, and even funerals. Whenever possible, make your events private and accept invitations in person.
Protect Your Home with an Alarm System
In this day and age, it’s more important than ever to pay attention to what you post on social media. But remember that it’s just a cautionary measure and does not mean you are fully protected. The best protection comes in the form of a wireless home security system, backed by 24/7 cellular monitoring and cutting-edge technology.
What other ways can social media put you at risk?