NOTE: Limited site updates from 8/10 through 8/16

Please note, from 8/10 through 8/16, there will be minimal site updates and notifications. Missing persons posters will continue to be posted on Twitter and email will be checked and responded to periodically. Thank you for your understanding.

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The Dangers of Social Media

The term “social media” was virtually unheard of ten years ago, yet today it’s an extension of many people’s daily lives. Most people – especially teenagers and young adults, have accounts across multiple networks that cater to slightly different interests. The volume of information shared is mind-boggling. A simple correlation of data across these networks of a person and the people they interact with can paint a frightening picture.

Going to the mall with your friends? Fantastic. Make sure you snap a picture of you and the girls hopping into so and so’s new ride and post it to Instagram. Once you’re at the mall, make sure you “check-in” on Facebook so everyone knows you’re there. You get the picture (sepia filter)…

That’s actually a very simplistic example. People exchange names, locations, addresses, phone numbers, vehicle types and license plate numbers to millions of people unknowingly without blinking an eye. Between information people personally put on the Internet compounded with what their associates contribute, it becomes very easy to paint a picture of a total stranger’s daily life.

This is free ammunition for the potential abductor.

Believe me, social media carelessness transcends all ages. How can a parent speak to their children about Internet safety if they’re making the same mistakes? Why would the children listen anyway? It’s not even so much about social networks per se, the problem is these colossal networks put a magnifying glass on the mistakes people make. For the most part, your words (posts) are forever etched in stone (Google).

Let me put it this way. Life is like a game of chess. Before you make your move, think how it can potentially affect the next dozen moves you intend to make. If you can instill this behavior in first yourself and then your offspring, you will be that much safer. Be safe my friends.