Everyone likes to share pictures and memories from their vacation with family members and friends, so social networking is a common practice for travelers and tourists. However, did you know that every year, thousands of people fall victim to crimes like identity theft, extortion, human trafficking, and assault because of their use of social media? While you might be used to the idea of sharing everything on your schedule with the entire world when you’re at home, it might not be so wise to take the same liberal approach to social networking security when you’re in a different part of the world. With that said, here are four tips you can use to keep your personal information out of the hands of nefarious people while you’re on vacation:
1. Use a Privacy-Focused Social Media Platform
First of all, if you’re using a popular social networking platform like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, you should know that virtually all of your information is for sale, so there’s only so much you can do to protect your privacy. One way to take care of such concerns is to use a privacy-oriented social media platform like Emenator, which has a very strict policy against brokering in user data. Establishing this basic layer of protection is an important first step to take.
2. Pay Attention to Who Can See Your Posts
On any social networking site, you should be able to control who can see and comment on your posts within your account settings. Be sure to use this feature wisely while on vacation to make your posts only visible to your friends. Some people even create a private group for posting vacation updates to close friends and family, without making it openly visible to their entire list of friends.
3. Forego the Location Sharing Updates
In many countries, criminals will often pay attention to social networking activity to find potential victims who will gladly give away their location, plans, appearance, interests, and everything else that is needed to set up an assault, theft, kidnapping, or other horrible victimization. Don’t make it easy for someone to set you up in a such a manner by posting your exact location on publicly visible status updates.
4. Use the Live Streaming Feature
Live streaming your experiences can help you stay safe by giving you a way to instantly record and broadcast whatever is happening to you while you’re on vacation. Plus, you can stream videos to a private group of friends so that only the people who you’ve shared the link with will have access to the video.
Pay Attention to Where You’re Going
Finally, as a bonus tip – don’t let social networking distract you to the point of putting you in danger while you’re visiting an area that you’re not familiar with. The last thing you want to do is walk off a cliff or in front of a car because you were so focused on social media or your selfie stick that you failed to pay attention to the world around you. Ultimately, engaging in social networking activity should be about enriching your vacation experiences, not consuming it.