PORTLAND -- You may want to think twice before updating your Facebook page or Twitter account while on vacation.

Police warn that crooks are increasingly using social networking sites to find potential victims.

It's an open invitation, explained detective Gil Millett of the Happy Valley Police Department.

Keri McMullen of New Albany, Indiana learned the hard way. Burglars stole nearly $10,000 worth of her belongings just minutes after she'd posted a status update on Facebook.

We were going to see a band in Louisville. I posted that on my Facebook page, who the band was, we were going, the band started at eight, said McMullen.

After seeing surveillance video of the suspects, McMullen realized one of them had friended her about six months earlier. She knew the person, but they hadn't seen each other in 20 years.

Isreal Hyman made a similar mistake. The Arizona man told his nearly 2,000 Twitter followers that he was headed out of town. While he was gone, thieves broke into his Mesa home and stole thousands of dollars in video equipment.

Oregon detectives told KGW they haven't seen any specific burglary cases involving social media - yet.

Police said the best way to prevent a home burglary is to simply lock your doors, make your home look occupied and report suspicious activity. And by all means, don't publicize that you're out of town.

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