According to a Nielsen report last year, the average person spends 7 hours per month on Facebook. Not suprising considering how Facebook and other online media sites have changed how we live our lives.
However, when you go up to upload a camera phone picture of your weekend activities with the kids, you should be aware that these otherwise innocuous images allow cyberstalkers to track your location.
Smart phones implant a GPS stamp called a geotag into digital images captured using their system. This geotage identifies the exact location where the photo was taken through coordinates embedded into the coding. When you share that picture in social networking sites such as Twitter or Facebook, then your location can easily be made, according to Ben Jackson, co-founder of ICanStalkU.com.
Jackson further adds, “We take that data, look at the publicly available photos and map it into an address so that we can tell a person was at a certain location when the photo was posted.”
GeoTag tracking: Good or Evil?
While geotag information may be helpful to investigators trying to track down suspects, it also provides criminals another avenue to hunt for victims online. Information gathered from geotags can be used to steal identities, stalk victims and search for possible targets. One such case occurred in Nashua, New Hampshire when burglars used online information to illegally obtain over $100,000 worth of goods.
Fortunately, ICanStalkU.com claims that the geotag functionality can be disabled from your smart phones. For more information, visit their website.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of identity theft or cyberstalking, contact The Strom Law Firm, LLC to discuss the facts of your case. We offer a free, no-cost consultation to discuss your legal rights.