This a story on why it’s always important to be aware of what you’re sharing online or with anyone who may call you fishing for information.
If haven’t heard of Strava, it’s a fitness network that allows you to track your cycling, running or swimming activities using GPS data. The users can upload the data from their activities, which includes distance traveled, pace, speed and elevation, along with heart rate. This allows the users to track and compare their data with that of other users. If you’re someone who is training alone it may provide an useful way to challenge yourself in your training. There are also challenges built into the system.
Of course whenever there’s data available, some nefarious party is liable to make something of it. At least that’s what UK cyclist Adam Jones thinks.
Jones thinks that those responsible for nicking his bikes would've been able to see the riders posting the fastest times on the app. That would then indicate those with the fastest bikes leading them to exploring the routes taken by the riders to locate where they live.
Jones had a number of high performance bikes stolen from his garage and urged other riders to check their privacy settings on the app.
An Essex man who had £12,500 worth of bikes stolen from his home has warned cyclists to be careful of what they post on social media. Adam Jones believes thieves may try and identify riders who record fast times on Strava segments and he expressed regret that he had not been more cautious regarding the information he shared online.
It may be a leap to suggest he was targeted because he was posting fast times, but it seems he hadn’t been as vigilant with his privacy as he should. People often link accounts and for the determined thief, it’s likely a small effort to case out Strava, Facebook or Instagram and find a person with a picture of their expensive bike and then find out where they live. As for Strava, what can they say, but suggest users be more aware of what they’re sharing on social media.
“Strava hasn’t seen any verified cases of bicycle theft related to our platform. However, we encourage all of our members to be aware of what they share on all types of social media. Our platform has a suite of tools to help control what you share, including privacy zones, which will hide the start and end points of your activity if they fall within the zone.”
Of course this is nothing new, thieves have in the past used Facebook or the classifieds to hunt down things they wanted to steal, it’s always best not to leave a trail of breadcrumbs and make it easier for them.
Any information can be dangerous in the wrong hands, be careful what you’re putting out there!
With thanks to Mancell Financial Group, Australia
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