Since it's travel month, we thought we'd share tips for keeping safe both online and offline while traveling. If at all possible don't tweet, blog or update facebook with your specific travel plans. It's like announcing to all the world--"Hey, I'm not going to be at home during these dates--why not come help yourself to my valuables."
If you're a social network junkie (and I admit to this), get your message out, but don't give dates. Example Tweet:
"Jamaica has incredible waterfalls and oh the snorkeling is divine."
With the above message it's not clear if you're still there or back from vacation.
"Just landed in Brazil. So excited to start my 12-day trip"
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And I think it's safest to update facebook after the trip as opposed to during the trip. Not only will you have more quality time with the kids, you'll also leave you home safer. When researching this post, I also found out lots about Facebook security when I went to the Consumer Reports Blog. It's worthwhile to check in there on occasion--like finding out about the 10 Worst Facebook Passwords.
Be sure to remind your kids of the same rules--teenagers might get creative if they know a friends house is vacant for a few days.
Sure it's unavoidable to completely cover your bases (we all have to use "out of office" email messages)--but a little common sense can go a long way to avoiding robbery. Some other safety tips:
- Make a copy of your credit cards that you'll bringing on your trip. Give the copy to a trusted friend or relative, In case of theft or loss, you'll have all the contact numbers ready to go.
- Ditto for passports.
- ATMs work around the world. Don't carry large amounts of cash on you.
- Take care of mail delivery--either have a neighbor collect your mail or have the post office hold it.
- Consider a timer for your lights and sprinkler system.
- Stop your newspaper delivery.
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