We understand: once you arrive at a brand new place full of exciting sights, pulling out the phone and taking a selfie is just second nature. That’s all well and good (and travelling does make for fantastic pics), but how often have you stopped to think you might be revealing too much information?
Some are common sense, and others will look like common sense only after hearing them, but here is a simple checklist that can save you (and your loved ones) uncalled risks, by just going through it before touching that “Share” button.
1. “Am I revealing my exact position?”
No one will win the originality prize with this piece of advice, but it’s always useful to ask yourself if you are okay with giving the whole world your exact position during a vulnerable time (while abroad). Stalkers can be found in any place, and tourists, in particular, are prime targets for the uncalled company.
It’s alright to let everyone know you are in Paris after you post a selfie with the Eiffel Tower, especially if you are taking a sweet panoramic view, but also do a quick check for any street signs behind you, and be extra careful when close to where you are staying.
2. “Would the others like if I shared this selfie?”
We don’t mean everyone on Facebook – when taking a group selfie, remember everyone has a say.
It’s super fun to take selfies and the more, the merrier – you can get the whole place on frame if you are prepared enough. But while we are all pretty much aware that selfies are prone to be shared, do think twice if the situation involves someone being “funny” in a way that might embarrass them if it reaches the wrong people (pictures in a pub often make for good stories, but can turn against you if an employer finds them).
This goes double on vacations, where everyone is letting loose.
3. Avoid the “Not at home!” selfie
Sure, most selfies are taking away from home, but sharing them together after arriving home will have a different impact than sharing them all live as you travel during a vacation.
A persistent burglar can likely dig out your home address if you give them a good reason to – if you want your family and friends to see the action live, think about doing private posts (something to consider with all vacations selfies, while we are at it).
4. Watch out for revealing routine activities
Yes, you are travelling, but once you crash someone’s place or book a hotel, you’ll likely develop mini-habits, especially about the hours you leave your place and come back after a vacation day, or when hitting a place for breakfast too often.
It’s one thing to take a selfie with the hotel’s beautiful garden, but after two or three times around the same hours, someone can take notice and have important information on your location at specific hours. Be smart with your angling so you don’t always take pictures with a similar frame and make it less obvious it’s the same place.
5. Be extra careful when sharing a selfie with your family
It’s common enough to visit relatives abroad, and when the time comes, take all the advice so far and double it before taking a selfie in your relatives’ house. Revealing too much information can be troublesome already, its way worse when you put your loved one’s security at risk just for not being cautious.
In short: have fun and take a lot of selfies, a picture is worth a thousand words! Be smart with your angles
but think twice about when and how to share them with the world.
Remember, private posts are a thing, and if you happen to be on family or friends’ group chats, maybe they are better places to share your vacations live than Facebook or Instagram. Take care, and enjoy your vacations!