Location services can reveal a lot of data about your whereabouts as well as inform the public when you are active online. Every time you post an image or video to Instagram, tweet or post a status update on Facebook, you are potentially sharing your location with a large group of potential onlookers, not all of whom have your best interests at heart. Kim Kardashian famously had her apartment looted in Paris in October 2016. The thieves were able to perform a valuation of the reality star’s jewels and gain prior knowledge of her trip to Paris via social media.
“The jewels were shown on the Internet, and [she said] that she didn’t wear fakes . . . the time she would arrive in France, you just had to look at the Internet and you knew everything, absolutely everything,” – Aomar Ait Khedache (alleged robber)
When you post an image directly from your phone, you may be unwittingly providing your GPS location. An ill-timed location services post can lead to multiple issues from break-ins to tax implications, as you or your family post from multiple locations. Turn off the ‘location services’ setting on your smartphone which will stop geotags automatically attaching to your photos. Most importantly refrain from broadcasting your location online, namely checking-in or posting photos until you return home. Ensure that you avoid social quizzes that are principally designed to acquire personal information. Vet your friend list, ensuring that you have added people that you know.
Just as you would not let a stranger into your home, be aware of the risks of using social media. It is important to know your social media account settings in detail. Protect yourself and your family from data breaches and cyber risk and help to preserve your reputation.