Knowing the risks of sharing your location on social media can be the difference between life or death. Some geolocation tags may list the exact address of your location, not just the city or general area you’re in. This means that if you share your location anyone who can view your social media posts may be able to find you in person. If you have children, they may be sharing their location on social media or other smartphone apps, which could put them at risk of unwanted contact with strangers. Not only is sharing your location dangerous but posting real-time content where you are at that moment. For example, posting a picture at a restaurant and tagging the exact location and name.
When you overshare, you’re essentially announcing that you’re away from home, which could put your valuables at risk. This could give criminals – including identity thieves – the chance to target your place of residence if they know where it is.
I was curious myself so I went through my friends on Snapchat to see who shared their location. It shows you EXACTLY where they are at that moment. Street name, address, and even a picture of their home.
How to turn off location sharing
- Make sure that you’ve got Location Settings turned off on your phone. Here are the directions to turning off your location settings on an iPhone and Android.
- Check the settings for each app on your phone to ensure that the location tracking is turned off for every individual one. This includes the camera on your smartphone so that your images aren’t tagged with your whereabouts.
- Don’t share your location manually – that is, don’t type it out in a social media post. This includes when and where you are on holiday.
- Check that the privacy settings on your social media accounts are set to your preferences so that you’re only sharing your posts with people you trust.
It goes without saying that the Snapchat app’s Snap Map feature offers stalkers and other anti-social elements a means to seek out their victims and give wings to their illicit motives- all through their phones. Stay Vigilant at all times. Trust your instincts and use common sense. Ask yourself if you need to share your location with people outside of your family before clicking that button.
Women Against Crime is committed to empowering women everywhere through self-defense training, education, and sharing resources. If you or your loved one is in immediate danger, please call 911. If you need immediate assistance, please refer to the list of resources here.