8 tips to stay safe with social media when you’re on vacation

When you're on vacation, it's important to be smart with social media.

When you’re super excited about a trip or vacation, it’s really easy to get carried away when it comes to posting on social media. But whether your preferred platform is Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, it’s important that you take proper precautions when it comes to your social media habits. If you’re not careful online, you could make your home a target for burglary. Believe it or not, burglars use social media to figure out which houses to burgle. When you post about being away from this date to that date, you’re telling the world that your house will be empty and unprotected. However, with these tips, you can help prevent a home burglary while you’re on vacation.

1. Don’t post about your travel plans.

If you put your travel dates, flight info, or vacation plans online, you’re opening yourself up to a world of trouble.

A tech-savvy burglar trolling Facebook could easily realize that you’re not going to be home, as we said, and what better time to strike than when no one’s home and they can take their time? They can break in, steal your stuff, and be gone before anyone’s the wiser. And they’ll have lots of time to make their getaway since no one’s going to be home to alert the police for a while.

Don’t announce your travel plans to the world. You don’t want to give a thief an invitation to your home.

2. Disable location services on your phone.

Location services on your phone often runs in the background unless you turn it off. Go to your settings and disable your location services so no one can figure out where you are. Usually, it’s as simple as hitting a button.

3. Tighten up your tagging settings.

Change your social media settings so that posts that people tag you in won’t automatically pop up on your page. Your traveling companions might tag you in a photo, and this is another way that thieves can figure out that you’re not home. Unfortunately, burglars are pretty clever. Take some time to check out your social media settings and make sure that posts you’re tagged in won’t appear on your page.

While you’re playing around with your settings, amp up your privacy and make it so that the entire world can’t look at your page. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

4. Don’t check-in at various locations.

You might have the option to “Check-In” on social media when you’re at certain locations. Resist the urge to check-in, as tempting as it might be. Checking-in can also be a dead giveaway if you’re not at home, as you’re essentially telling everyone, “Look at me, in this city that I don’t live in at this place that I’m on vacation in!” Whether you’re going on a road trip or flying, don’t holler about your whereabouts online.

If you're on social media, be careful and don't post your whereabouts.

5. Take a break from social media while you’re on vacation.

Just take a break from your social media accounts while you’re vacationing. Vacation is time for relaxing, experiencing new places, and spending time with family or friends. Don’t let the time fly by as you’re too busy looking at your phone to take in your surroundings or enjoy your time with your traveling companions. Yes, you might fear the unpleasant symptoms of social media withdrawal, but you will survive. You are strong. You can put the phone aside for your trip and simply live in the moment, absorbing all there is to see and relaxing.

6. Post about your trip after you’re back.

If you must take to social media to chronicle your escapades, wait until you’re home. This will give you the opportunity to go through all your pictures and choose your favorite ones to share, anyways, and that way you’re not bombarding people with photo and post overload.

If you want, you can even consider using a scheduling software to create posts and set them to post at a later time – after you’ve returned. There are multiple platforms you can use to schedule and manage your posts. That way you can write or compose your post while the experience is still fresh, but your post won’t go live until you’re home.

7. Be aware of how secure the Wi-Fi connection you’re using is.

When you’re traveling, the available Wi-Fi might not be the most secure. Consider how secure the network you’re using is and let that guide the actions you take online.

8. Go over social media safety with your whole family.

Make sure that everyone’s on the same page when it comes to being smart with social media when you’re on vacation. Ask your teenagers to wait to post pictures and so on until you’ve returned from vacation and make sure they understand the importance of not posting details about your family’s travel plans online. Teenagers often seem glued to their phones, so make sure that they’re aware of what not to post while on vacation.

Don't post about your travel plans on social media.

Vacation is meant to be a relaxing, stress-free time for you and your family or friends. Be social media savvy this summer and don’t give away your whereabouts, as cool or envy-inducing those whereabouts might be. Traveling is great and of course, you want to capture the memories with photos. Just be careful on social media and don’t broadcast your location to everyone. Focus on being in the moment instead of flooding the Internet with pictures and posts about your vacation.

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