Facebook and privacy are always going to be linked due to the personal information each account inevitably holds. The number one social media network is regularly making headlines over privacy concerns, and today is no different.
A home in Australia was robbed last week by two masked men just a few hours after an image of cash appeared on Facebook. The image showed a large pile of cash and was posted by a 17-year-old girl who was helping count her grandmother’s savings. It didn’t take long for the robbers to figure out where the house was located and travel there with the intention of stealing it.
The image was posted at 4pm on Thursday, May 24. At 11:30pm that day the two masked men arrived wielding a knife and wooden club. They forced their way into the house wanting to speak to the 17-year-old about the cash. She was no longer there (a 58-year-old man, woman of 47, and boy of 14 were, though), so the men instead left with a small amount of money they found by searching the home.
The police were called the following morning and are now actively seeking the men. They also took the opportunity to remind everyone that personal information posted on social networks should be done with “extreme caution.”
Posting an image of a large amount of cash on Facebook is not a very clever thing to do, but it’s the other information made available and privacy settings used that allowed this to happen. The girl’s location details were available for people to see in some form, and someone decided to use them to try and steal the money. Luckily for the girl and the grandmother they were not around when these guys turned up.
Is Facebook to blame? No. Ultimately the girl is, but I would like to know exactly how the men found her location. Was it a default privacy setting in Facebook that allowed them to see it, or did she actually just tell everyone where she was when posting?
Read more at NSW Police Force, via BBC News