Although I love seeing real-time photos and commentary on Facebook from friends traveling it also worries me, they’re just letting crooks know “Hey come rob our house. We’re out of town!” (Here’s a round up story on the trend and tips to stop it. The Leaf Chronicle.)
I guess Facebook is safer than Twitter because in theory it’s only “Friends” seeing your feed whereas Twitter goes out to the world.
I had to ask Michael to please stop posting on Twitter: “Getting on a airplane for Phoenix” or “Assigned for two weeks to Washington, D.C.” I’m sure criminals read those posts as: “My wife will be home alone with three kids!”
I commiserated PRIVATELY by email on Facebook with a CNN wife recently when her husband was sent for weeks to California to cover Michael Jackson and my husband was sent for weeks to Washington, D.C. to work on the Sotomayer coverage.
There are also low-tech ways to tip off criminals your family is away on vacation:
People always say not to let your newspapers or mail build up, but do you worry when you put on stop on your newspaper or hold on your mail that now you’ve told someone you’re going to be out of town? My parents always had neighbors pick up the mail and papers but that’s a bother for a long trip.
I kind of like doing putting the holds on through automated services, but then the carrier does know it’s been held.
Do you put lights on timers to help throw criminal off? Our former neighbors were very big on the lights on timers. My mother always did that too.
A few years ago, our new neighbor made a point to pull his car into our driveway several times during our vacation week so it looked like there was traffic in and out, which I thought was extremely nice!
Do you worry about people knowing you’re away on vacation or do you think that is paranoid? Do you post real-time commentary and family photos from your trips on Facebook or Twitter? Do you think one is safer than the other? How do you handle mail, newspapers and lights? What are other tactics to throw criminals off your scent?