Burglars Now Using Twitter, Facebook Against You

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Next time you leave your home for any appreciable length of time, whatever you do, don’t tell the Internet. A new study has revealed that an unsettling 78% of burglars use social media such as Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare to choose just where they’re going to break in next.

That’s not the only way that burglars have started using the Internet; 74% of those polled by British home security firm Friedland also admitted to casing their joint of choice using Google Street View wherever possible.

If there’s an upside to this report, it’s that the survey sample size was surprisingly small—only 50 former burglars responded to the questions—meaning that there’s every possibility these results can’t be properly mapped onto a larger framework. Of course, it’s just as likely that while we’re mulling over the problem, smarter burglars are keeping their mouths shut about their methods and Googling your house even as you read this.

Perhaps it’s time to start Facebooking about that terrifying new guard dog you bought last week, just in case.

MORE: NYPD to Scour Facebook and Twitter for Evidence of Crimes

Graeme McMillan is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @Graemem or on Facebook at Facebook/Graeme.McMillan. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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