By Tom Powers – Self Defense Company Instructor/ Cyber security Expert
Facebook is a great thing, but if configured incorrectly…it gives terrible people WAY too much info about you. Unfortunately, because of what my company does, I am often forced to think like the bad guys in order to keep my clients safe.
One of our clients tagged a couple employees in a post last night. Totally seems like a great community thing to do…but as a cybersecurity professional, it got my attention.
I clicked on the tagged people, who were not friends of mine, and their profiles were pretty open. In there I saw pictures of their kids, what town they live in, etc. I notified our client about the dangers of this and had a call with them this morning for a quick “What not to do” training .
I took 15 minutes before the call, and by using sites like Whitepages.com, Realtor.com, County GIS records, and GoogleEarth… I then knew what their kids look like, what school they would be going to, what the house looked like, when they bought it, how much they paid, what the neighborhood looked like, and based on some of their pics, I could tell the Dad was a hunter so I knew that Fall would probably have him in the woods.
If I would have spent more time, I could have tracked who the neighbors are, FB stalked them to see what they do, and extrapolated when they would probably not be around either.
As an abductor, I have all the info needed to either get the kids at school or take them right out of the yard as they play (this particular person had a 2.78 acre lot surrounded by farm fields..so the approach would have been quick and easy)
Last year there were human trafficking cases in EVERY county in Wisconsin. That’s right….taking kids and selling them….every county had at least one case!!
This is how they do it.
Everything I detailed above is how they target their prey.
Social media is great, but let’s put in some restrictions and be safer. Don’t have FB friends of people you don’t actually know or never have actually met.
Then…restrict your FB settings as much as possible. Here’s a GREAT link on how to do that:
Please…copy and paste this to all your friends and to your pages (sharing limits who can see this even though I made this post public).
Share this with your schools, churches, day care providers…anyone who will listen!!