Sharing too much on social media while travelling can make you a target of thieves. These days, many burglars use social media to find out if someone’s home is empty – and people tend to leave their homes empty when travelling.
While social media users know they shouldn’t share their home address, current location or phone number on Facebook, many of them still share vacation photos or social plans. Information such as vacation photos or social plans look more innocent to share, and potential threats tend to be overlooked.
“Although it’s fun to post vacation photos and let everyone know you’re having a cocktail on a sunny beach, that sends a clear signal to burglars that your home is empty,” said Ruby Gonzalez, Communications Director of NordVPN. “Even the people who feel sufficiently educated about online privacy still reveal their personal details online. Millennials especially tend to post their travel plans as well as travel photos.”
NordVPN is a Virtual Private Network provider that helps protect online privacy by hiding an Internet user’s IP address and substituting it with NordVPN’s server’s IP address in any country of choice. Here is some advice by NordVPN how to still enjoy sharing on social media, but staying safe and private:
1. Wait till you get home to post your travel pictures. Those who really need to share their photos should at least wait till they are back home, and their home is not empty anymore.
2. Make sure social media settings are private. One of the most important things before sharing is to make sure that the settings are set on private sharing with friends or a select group of friends, and your photos are not visible to everyone.
3. Realise that everything you post online will stay online. Tweets or photos that one posts as a college student will still be there when they are a company director down the road. Therefore, online privacy might have a different value to the same person after some years. To stay protected, don’t post anything now that you might regret later.
4. Never share personal data on Facebook. Do not enter your address or phone number on Facebook where it can be visible to anyone. Do not create status updates sharing vulnerable information.
5. Don’t overshare feelings, not only data. People who share their feelings on social media often get bullied, while others look on and allow harassment to happen. It’s more advisable to share personal feelings in close and friendly circles than publicly.
6. Protect your location. Keep your whereabouts private by using a VPN. A VPN is a Virtual Private Network that hides your IP address and your location. By connecting to another country’s server, you can set your location to virtually any place in the world. Sometimes, a VPN can slow down your internet speed. In order to see if that’s the case, I’d suggest you run a quick speed test on https://www.speedcheck.org/ to see if it changed. NordVPN is one of the most advanced VPN service providers in the world as it uses leading industry encryption methods and keeps no customer logs.
7. Understand the dangers of free public Wi-Fi. Cafes, shops, and even school cafeterias offer unsecured Wi-Fi networks. Users need to be especially cautious when connecting to these networks – as they can easily be monitored. Hackers can easily position themselves as a Wi-Fi hotspot or use special software to steal data from unprotected networks. One of the best ways to safely use public Wi-Fi is by installing a VPN.
In the age of digital oversharing, it’s still possible to make sure your friends see your vacation photos – but it’s important to be careful with privacy and to follow strict social media rules.
For more information, visit www.nordvpn.com