The Link Between Social Media and Home Invasion Robberies

Everyone loves a vacation. And these days, with smart phones, digital cameras and apps for just about everything, it’s easy to share your vacation and let all of your Facebook and Instagram friends enjoy it right along with you. Be careful, though, with how and when you share. A 2013 Nationwide Insurance survey revealed that 14 percent of homeowners use social media to post updates, share photos or check into locations on Facebook, Twitter or Foursquare while they’re on vacation. For Gen-Y (ages 18-34), it jumps to 41 percent. 

Sharing is great – bragging can be even more fun. But there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it, especially when it comes to matters of safety and security for you, your family, your home and your valuables. 

Security experts warn of rising statistics of home invasion robberies planned around social media postings that clearly share details ranging from departure flights to resort locations to expected arrivals. These details create a Home Invasion 101 blueprint that might just be too tempting to turn down for friends of friends that stumble upon your postings online. 

Next time you plan a trip, have fun! But follow these simple steps for sharing the highlights without returning to find your home devoid of valuables.

Wait until you’re safely home to share vacation photos and stories. What happens in Cabo stays in Cabo – at least while you’re still there. Once you’ve returned, get the best of both worlds by sharing all your great photos from the safety of your own home.

Don’t tag the location of your photos. It’s fun to show off that fabulous dessert from your splurge at The French Laundry in Napa Valley, but if you live in Arlington, VA, you’re pretty much letting everyone know that your home will be empty for some time. 

Don’t share your itinerary. This may seem like a given, but some “innocent” comments like “Counting down, only 3 days until Maui” or “Just touched down, 10 days in paradise baby,” just shared your arrival and departure dates. 

Blog now – publish later: Keep a record of the amazing experiences of your vacation, but wait until you’re home to hit the publish button on your blog. It will still be just as amazing, and help you preserve those great memories, while keeping your family and your home safe and sound.