What the Tech? Vacation photos and social media
When you're off on a family vacation to a place like Universal Studios in Orlando, it's going to be a memorable vacation. But there are a few things you should do before you leave home so that the memories are good.
Keep your vacation between friends. Sure everyone would love to see your toes in the sand or by the pool, but not everyone should. If you post one of these shots on Facebook or Instagram, anyone who sees it will know you're not home. Probably not a big deal if only your friends notice, but did you know that ANYONE can see your posts on Facebook or Instagram unless you take some steps to protect your privacy.
On Facebook, if you share a photo publicly, anyone can see it. Even people who aren't on Facebook. So before you pull out of the driveway, you absolutely must do this: Go to settings, then privacy. Next, go to Your Activity. You can, and should change this from public to friends. Now only your friends will see that pic of your family at Disney World with today's date. If you've accepted a ton of friend requests from people you don't know, I suggest creating a list of trusted friends and share only with them.
Is this is an over-reaction? Would someone really go through Facebook trying to figure out who's out of town? Yes, and it's easy to do, especially if you belong to any local Facebook groups. HIP pages or groups where people post for sale items. Anything you post publicly is visible to anyone. It'd be like walking up to a yard sale in a strange part of the town and say, 'I'm leaving my home unattended for a few days.'
On Instagram, it's a little more tricky. Some people are particular about who can follow them on Instagram and require all requests to be approved. Others accept any and all follow requests. Just like on Facebook, any public post can be seen by anyone visiting your account in the app or online.
You cannot change the privacy for each post on Instagram. If you're concerned about your privacy on Instagram, don't share vacation photos there until you return home.
Not everyone is as interested in your vacation as you are. A study by the insurance firm Aviva surveyed 2,000 people and found 73% of people think it's annoying to see photos of other people's vacations posted to social media.