Beware burglary via Facebook, warn Thames police

MATT BOWEN
Last updated 12:13 09/12/2013

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Burglars are hitting vacant Coromandel holiday homes more and more and often in sprees of up to 11 homes in a night.

And now Thames Police are urging property owners to secure their properties as best they can this summer and also not to post going away plans on social media sites like Facebook in case it criminals see it as an invitation to break and enter.

Senior Sergeant Graham Shields said holiday resort areas such as Matarangi are getting hit ''quite severely'' because there are lots of unoccupied houses.

Many of them have a flat screen television inside, fishing gear in the garage and booze in the cupboards which are commonly taken during burglaries, Mr Shields said.

''We used to get maybe one or two occasions per year where someone would do 10 burglaries in a place like Whangapoua - now it's happening once a month. It's becoming more common knowledge that you can go up there and get lots in one trip.''

The offenders in a recent Thames burglary may have been aware of the residents being away due to Facebook updates, Thames police said.

''Remember, posts can be shared and seen by friends of friends. Don't post anything that you don't want the world to know...this system is not private," they warned via their official Facebook page.

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- Waikato

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