The “newest” trending medium for any internet user is Facebook (newest is a relative term, in this age of hyper-fast information sharing, 1-2 years is considered old). Although created only in 2004, it is today an ubiquitous app that anyone with access to the internet has used at one point or another. It is a game-changer for the technological world on the level of Wall Street for the financial world, and like Wall-Street, it has created many problems for society, despite its indisputable usefulness. For example, no one had anticipated the full potential of Wall-Street during its inception, and as a result of clever manipulation of the system a man accumulated a dangerous amount of wealth that by today’s standard is worth more than the GDP of entire countries and destroyed many lives almost brought the US’ economic system down on its knees.
Quite like the Wall-Street, the internet unleashed an unprecedented potential on changing the way people live their lives at the global scale; except instead of moving faster at a exponentially faster rate, the internet moves information. And Facebook is the number one mover of personal information on the internet. There have been many quirky stories about criminals updating their profile while robbing someone’s house and leading to their arrest and careless individuals who forgot they’ve added their employers as friends on Facebook and were fired as a result of bad-mouthing their bosses online that we’ve all laughed and dismissed after reading said stories, but there are also some very alarming anecdotes of predators and stalkers online. The most dangerous ones, of course, are ones who attract pre-to late adolescents that do not fully comprehend the fact that people can be more dangerous and devious than what they’ve seen on TV; and that they do not have the self-defence capabilities they believe they miraculously possess. Chilling stories of such often make one wonder how it is these teenagers were so foolish as to follow a predator
As it turns out is not hard for stalkers or predators to join one’s list of friends on social media websites; the most people that one can keep track of is around 150 individuals (this determined based anthropological evidence; which explains why in the military, companies never have more than 100-150 soldiers serving together, it is to promote group cohesion. Any more than 150 people individuals stop caring about their fellow soldiers who they depend on to survive), but it is not uncommon to see people with two hundred or even a thousand “friends” listed on their profile. There is simply no way the human mind has the ability to remember all these people, but that does not stop some emotional individuals to post their most personal hurts and worries for the public to see; when that happens, stalkers and predators would be given the opportunity to exploit these individuals at their most vulnerable.
This does not just apply to young people, anyone who enjoys socializing or is constantly meeting new people could be a potential target. And it is not always just about stealing personal information, sometimes it is just to find out about the places that you frequent. For those who have smart-phones that and enjoy posting their activities and the location the activities takes place in, they have made it just that much easier for someone who wishes to follow them to understand their habits. This means it is just that much easier for a criminal to break into the home of the unsuspecting or plan out other worse criminal activities, if any criminal were so inclined.
There are numerous ways to abuse social medias for personal gains in ways the sites were never intended for, but gunpowder was never meant for shooting bullets neither, it was originally made for fireworks. To protect oneself one must be careful and more selective on who they give access to on their profile media page, but since that’s unlikely since most people are too polite to refuse or simply could not be bothered to figure out who exactly the new person on their list of 200+ friends is, the next best thing is to just limit the amount of information they put online. Failing basic prevention methods, it may be a good idea to think about solutions, like police who are trained to think like criminals so that they can re-trace the footsteps, or retired police who are still interested in solving puzzles.
 John D Rockefeller, is still considered today the richest man in human history
This is a guest post from contributing author David Veibl. David is writing for Beacon Investigative Solutions, a private investigation agency present in 45 states in the US. With multiple offices in hundreds of cities, they are the best specialist’s available for asset search investigations.