Law enforcers warn of facebook dangers - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Law enforcers warn of facebook dangers

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By Christian Jennings - bio | email

ALBANY,  GA (WALB) – The popular website facebook seems fun and harmless, but law enforcers say if you aren't careful it can attract criminals and create dangerous situations.

Because of safety concerns the networking site is launching a safety center to make members aware of dangers while surfing the net. And even Albany law enforcers have some safety tips of their own for facebook users.

It seems as though everyone has a facebook page, in fact there are 400 million users. It's a fun website especially when you are bored at home but law enforcers say you have to use caution when accepting friend requests, posting pictures, and especially posting status updates telling the world where you are and what you're doing.

The average facebook user spends at least one hour on the addicting website per day. But even when you're not online, friends, friends of friends, and even strangers could be looking at your page.

"So you really don't want to give out information like you're going to be out of town or on vacation," said Capt. Craig Dodd with the Dougherty County Sheriff's Office says posting such status updates is asking for trouble. Especially since most people are burglarized by people they know.

"You might as well put a sign up that says, here I'll be out of town, come break into my house," said Capt. Dodd.

Instead, wait to post pictures and updates when you get BACK from vacation. He also warns users to use caution when posting personal info, even birthdays. He suggests only posting your month and year, not the exact day.

"There are websites where they can find you by your cell phone number, by your name and date of birth you can find anybody you want to find on the web," said Capt. Dodd.

Because of that scary fact, the social networking giant just launched a new "safety center" full of tools for teenagers, teachers, parents, even law enforcers, who also have a special warning for women.

"Women constantly post pics of themselves at the beach in bikinis and that's a really bad idea," said Dodd.

The most helpful tool to insure safety on facebook is the privacy tab. Change your settings so only your close friends can see your info, pictures, and comments.

Last month an Indiana woman told police one of her facebook friends burglarized her home after she updated her facebook status, saying she and her fiancee would be at a concert.

 
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