With technology invading every aspect of life, the age-old burglars are also adopting technology and planning their heist by browsing social media updates. 


As the web of the internet is spreading fast, privacy has become a big concern. Also, people on social media are giving away information in the form of statuses, photo sharing, check-ins, and location shares further simplifying the efforts for the burglars who might be tracking the users as friend or follower.


Recently, in Chennai a seminar was organised that saw senior police officials discussing on tackling such cases with cyber experts, a leading daily reported. In the seminar, incidents were shared by police officials about how a repeated offender befriended a businessman on Facebook, tracked his movements and broke into his house when the family of the businessman went on a long vacation. 


In another similar case, the thief befriended a man on Facebook and traced his teenage son’s profile and broke in when he learned that the family is away from home for two days. The thief was a stranger to the family and got all the necessary information from the teenager’s posts and photos. 


Speaking about the vulnerabilities of social media, an official disclosed that authorities are worried about the middle-aged and children using social media who may be unaware of the privacy settings, the Times of India quoted additional superintendent of police, cybercrime, S Balu former, as saying. Balu is also a part of Cyber Society of India responsible for organising workshops for officials.


Apart from helping burglars with details, the social media feeds also helps stalkers to locate their victims. Any information about one’s location, schedule or lifestyle can be enough to allow criminals to act on it. In fact, this trend is rising among burglars in western countries the report claimed. 


A member of data security council of India and cybercrime investigator, S Ravichandran also pointed out that if the privacy setting is poor in a friend’s social media profile that can also give access to your social media feeds, he was quoted by TOI. Also, in a couple of cases, mobile stores have exploited user’s information found on their smartphones given for formatting or repair.