As of 2016, 78% of Americans had a social network profile, and according to estimates, the number of social media users reach 1.96 billion and is expected to grow to some 2.5 billion by 2018. So what does that mean? It means that a lot of people choose to use social media to post personal updates, including when/where they are going on vacation.
Don’t let your social media behavior during vacation put your home at risk for a burglary, and it’s a known fact that burglars use social media to help them choose the location of their next break-in.
Here are some tips to using social media safely for your next vacation:
Before vacation –
Resist the “I’m going on vacation” social media announcement: you might want to brag to all your friends that you’ll be spending the next week on the beach, but resist this urge to post or tweet about it.
Disable location-identifying settings: smart phones, tablets, and laptops have location services that identify where you are by using GPS or Wifi hotspots. By disabling the location-identifying settings, your geographic location won’t be captures if you tweet or post.
Check your Facebook tagging settings: Facebook’s privacy settings allow you to manage the posts and photos you’re tagged in. Prevent tagged posts from automatically appearing on your timeline by enabling the timeline review control. Then you can approve pictures snapped by your friends or family during vacation after you get home.
During vacation –
Don’t check in or post about vacation: Check-ins are a no-no while you’re on vacation. By pinning your exact location on a social media virtual map, your friends will know where you are – and burglars will know where you aren’t.
Capture the incredible moments: Consider using a social media management website to write posts and tweets, then schedule them to post after you return home.
Blog now – publish later: Blogging during your vacation is a great way to capture all the details of your experience. When you finish writing the post, save it as a draft instead of publishing it.
After vacation –
Share: Once you get home, recap your vacation with friends and family by sharing the photos from your trip and publishing your blog posts.