Taking the picture perfect snap in front of an autumnal door or atop a trendy designer sofa might be all the rage for influencers, but those pouting for selfies may be giving away more than they realise.
Experts claim Instagram users all over the world are putting their homes at risk of burglary by sharing photos of their properties on social media and inadvertently highlighting ways to break in.
Conducted by Origin, a British window and door brand, in partnership with Secured by Design, the national police crime prevention initiative, the research reveals the living room is where homeowners most frequently share pictures from on their Instagram profiles.
Those under 30 are the worst offenders, with famous faces including Wiltshire-born Youtuber Zoe Sugg (aka Zoella) and reality stars Olivia Buckland and Charlotte Crosby among the culprits.
In one image Zoella, 29, shows off a seasonal wreath hung on the door of her house – and by doing so gives away the type of lock she has, making it easier for criminals to plan their entry into her home.
In this image, Zoe Sugg shows off her new autumnal wreath – while inadvertently revealing what the front of her house looks like. The picture also clearly shows the type of lock and handle the door has, making it even easier for potential burglars to plan their entry
Naive homeowners like Zoella are unwittingly giving burglars large amounts of information that can assist break-ins.
By showing off expensive televisions, sound systems and other valuable electrical goods, influencers and celebrities are making themselves more vulnerable to theft.
One picture highlighted by the research shows Geordire Shore star Gaz Beadle, 31, posing in his back garden with his son and two dogs.
To the untrained eye it seems like a sweet family snap, but experts warned that the image shows multiple points of entry for anyone planning to break in and swipe the star’s prized possesions.
Here, Gary Beadle poses with his son whilst revealing the entire back of his home and garden, including several potential entry points, such as windows and sliding doors which are left ajar
A spokesperson for Origin told Femail: ‘Here, Gary Beadle poses with his son whilst revealing the entire back of his home and garden, including several potential entry points, such as windows and sliding doors which are left ajar’.
Gary wasn’t the only Geordie Shore star to overshare their home. His ex-girlfriend Charlotte Crosby, 29, recently shared an image of her posing on her crushed velvet sofa – a trend popular with influencers.
But in the snap, she gives potential intruders a look at her windows and the layout of her house, which could help assist a break in.
The master bedroom was second in the list of rooms shared online, despite being the room intruders are most likely to target for jewellery, cash and other valuables.
The kitchen and garden then closely follow as the most likely spaces that homeowners are inadvertently posting on their public profiles.
Charlotte Crosby, 29, recently shared an image atop her crushed velvet sofa – a trend popular with influencers. But in the snap, she gives potential intruders a look at her windows and the layout of her house, which could help plan their entry
Ben Brocklesby, director at Origin, said: ‘We help thousands of UK homeowners improve the security of their homes every year and conducted this research as we wanted more people to be aware of the dangers of oversharing online.
‘Strong and secure doors and windows is just one step to beating the burglar – residents also need to be conscious of what they are sharing online.
‘Something as simple as sharing a photo on a public profile can give burglars a shop window view into your home.’
Photographs of keys by the front door, showing exactly where they are kept during the day, was among the posts analysed during the research.
Other posts that were equally as inviting for criminals included photos of expensive cars positioned right outside properties.
One user hadn’t turned off location tracking, which means anyone using the social media channel could not only see the car and its number plate, but also exactly where it was kept overnight.
Here, Olivia Bowen poses in front of her front door, offering another angle of their home and a clear view of potential entry points for an intruder
Love Island stars Olivia Buckland, 25, and her husband Alex Bowen, 28, often share snaps taken inside their lavish Essex pad.
In one snap, while Olivia stuns in a bright orange dress, the background shows her front door and the type of lock she has.
In another, the pair pose outside their home revealing two cars, their garage door and several windows, helping burglars to identify where they live and the assets they own.
Influencer Poppy Deyes, sister of Zoella’s boyfriend Alfie, was also among the famous faces that overshared snaps of their home.
In one image, the 28-year-old, sits atop a kitchen island in a blue boiler suit; but the background shows glass panelled doors which could be used by burglars as an entry point.
In another, the pair pose outside their home revealing two cars, their garage door and several windows, helping burglars to identify where they live and the assets they have
Love Island star Georgia Steel, 21, is also guilty of revealing too much of her home.
The reality TV personality inadvertently offered potential intruders a glance into her flat, including a view of the sliding doors which lead to a first floor balcony in one of her many Instagram snaps.
Doug Skins from Secured by Design said: ‘While it’s great to keep in touch with your friends and family, be careful about what you share online as you never know who else may see your activity.
‘Think seriously about who can read your posts and secure your profile by checking privacy settings. Also, think before you share – do you really need to make that information or photo public?’
In this image, Poppy Deyes offers followers a view into her kitchen, including a glass panelled door which could be used by burglars as an entry point
Here Love Island’s Georgia Steel inadvertently offers potential intruders a glance into her flat, including a view of the sliding doors which lead to a first floor balcony
Ben Brocklesby concluded: ‘With the rise of interiors influencers sharing photos of their properties online every day, it’s unsurprising that homeowners want to contribute to this trend by proudly sharing photos of the inside of their house with followers.
‘Even something as simple as taking a selfie with friends can mean you’re sharing snippets of your home in the background.
‘By making profiles private and being careful not to share photos of access points and valuables, homeowners can make sure their property stays safe and secure.’
Public profiles of 500 UK homeowners were analysed as part of the research, with nearly 50 per cent posting at least one photograph of their home online.
How to burglar-proof your home
‘As well as being more careful of what you share online, there are things you can do to protect your home from burglars,’ explains Doug Skins from Secured by Design.
‘Burglars are often opportunistic thieves, who seek any opening they can take advantage of, specifically doors and windows left open or unlocked, or that are easy to force.
‘But it really doesn’t take much to deter these thieves, so always ensure that you securely lock your windows and doors.
‘If you need new windows or doors, we recommend fitting ones which have achieved Police Preferred Specification and are accredited by Secured by Design.
These have been tested to ensure they’re robust enough to resist physical attack by opportunistic burglars.’