Avoid Social Media Oversharing & Other Tips for a Safer Social Media Presence
Blake A. Klinkner, The Klinkner Law Firm, LLC Cheyenne, Wyoming
The end of 2017 and the beginning of 2018 reminded me again of how cringe worthy social media can be during the holidays. No, I am not talking about friends' photos of "ugly sweater" parties. I am talking about people posting pictures of all of the new, expensive gifts they now have lying around their house, right before they "check in" online to a fancy location outside of town to party the night away. I am also talking about people who let the whole world know that they are on vacation - again right after they have just posted pictures on social media of all the new, expensive gifts they received during the holidays which are now sitting unguarded in the middle of their living room.
It is a sad reality that criminals are increasingly using social media to target victims for crimes such as burglaries and robberies.1 In fact, it has been estimated that 80% of burglars will monitor or otherwise utilize social media to determine their next victims.2 Although the holiday season may be a particularly busy time for criminals intending to use social media postings to identify their next victims, it certainly is not the only time of year when individuals post details about their trips away from home or pictures of their new belongings - only to regret it later when they become the victim of a burglary or robbery. Indeed, social media-targeted property crimes are becoming so common that insurance companies are increasingly denying claims for criminal loss of property where the insured posted information on social media that made them an easier target of the crime.3
Playing it safe on social media would be an excellent new year's resolution for 2018. By following the recommendations below, you can help reduce the likelihood that you will overshare on social media in bad ways: • Do not post pictures online of gifts or other valuables. This should sound like common sense, but unfortunately it is not often the case. On average, burglars will spend no...