Social Media: Security Dangers
With the various social media platforms that are prevalent among us all today, from Facebook to Instagram to Twitter, it is becoming more and more common for us to share our movements without a second thought.
Many are under the false impression that their seemingly throwaway musings are being read by a couple of friends and no one else. This is the dangerous misconception of online anonymity: that your personal information, however trivial, might put you at risk if it falls into the wrong hands.
Home Security Risks
One obvious example of this is the threat it poses to home security. While none of us would ever consider advertising the fact that our houses were empty to directly perfect strangers, this is essentially what we’re doing when we post holiday photos and the like onto Facebook.
Many of us assume that our status updates are private. While privacy settings do add a degree of security, they do not completely prevent your whereabouts from being displayed to those who know how to get at it – and some do not even realise that their photos are not locked away at all.
As a recent Time Magazine article suggests, 78% of burglars now identify their next target by trawling social media sites for clues as to the location of homeowners at any given moment. It’s not just holiday snaps that they’re on the lookout for either – the location options that are attached to a lot of status updates nowadays provide clues for would-be home intruders, letting them know just how far away from the house someone might be at any one time.
With this in mind, here are a few tips for safer social media usage in respect to home security…
While the temptation may be to show off to friends and family (and especially colleagues!) that you’re sunning yourself on a golden beach somewhere, you may want to reconsider advertising your empty home to burglars. That doesn’t mean you can’t post your pictures at all; wait until you’re back and make it clear that you’re uploading them retrospectively.
Many social media platforms, particularly Facebook, encourage you to tag your location with each status update or photo upload. While this might be tempting, bear in mind the message it will send to anyone snooping for your whereabouts while potentially casing your home.
Keep your Plans to Yourself
You might be excited about that weekend away coming up, or that day out in the countryside you’ve got planned, but resist the temptation to express your anticipation over social media. Not only will you be advertising the fact that your home will be unoccupied over a specific period, you’ll also give any potential intruders the opportunity to prepare a break-in in advance.
While it’s up to you to stay smart on social media, AAI Security Systems are on hand to ensure that your home or business remains safe from the threat of intruders. We supply, install and maintain a wide range of industry-leading security alarm systems throughout London and the Home Counties, keeping your premises safe 24/7. Get in touch to find out more.