Sydney, Jan 10 (ANI): Scanning social media sites like Facebook for status updates is a favourite trick of burglars to identify easy homes to rob, a report has said.
With privacy settings changing so frequently on sites such as Facebook, thieves say they find it easier than ever to gain access to accounts, a recent survey of 69 burglars, conducted by Perth's Edith Cowan University in conjunction with Australian Institute of Criminology revealed.
According to the Herald Sun, other websites, such as Google Street View, show photographs of individual houses.
From these sites the would-be burglars can easily gauge security and ease of access by looking for alarms and side entrances.
The study also found that burglaries were usually spontaneous and the homes that were most vulnerable were the easiest to gain access to.
On average it took burglars just five to 15 minutes to break into a home and make off with cash or goods, often worth up to 5000 dollars per home.
According to the report, the biggest deterrent identified by the thieves was the presence of a dog.
About 53 per cent of offenders said a canine at a home would prevent them from committing a crime, the report added. (ANI)