Website tells burglars when you're out

Posted by Emma Woollacott

A new website called PleaseRobMe aims to highlight the dangers of broadcasting your every move on Twitter.

The site aggregates the public Twitter feeds of players of Foursquare, a social networking game, to announce when users have left their homes.

Foursquare is a game that allows users to 'colonize' their city. It requires players to check in and update the website whenever they reach a destination in order to earn points and badges. To colonise someone else's house, you enter their address.

Unfortunately, that means telling the world when you go out, while your co-players may be publicising your address.

Right now, PleaseRobMe  is telling the world that Taji in Tokyo and ritters90 in Newark are out and about, conveniently leaving their homes empty.

"On one end we're leaving lights on when we're going on a holiday, and on the other we're telling everybody on the internet we're not home," say the site's creators.

"The goal of this website is to raise some awareness on this issue and have people think about how they use services like Foursquare, Brightkite, Google Buzz etc. Because all this site is, is a dressed up Twitter search page. Everybody can get this information."

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