An eye-opening 78 percent of burglars have said that social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare are being used to select properties.

54 percent also said that placing their status and whereabouts on social networking sites was a common mistake made by homeowners.

A further 74 percent said that Google Street View played an important role in today’s home thefts.

The report, which was carried out by home security experts Friedland, also revealed that the average home burglary takes just over 10 minutes to commit, and that only two minutes are required to break into a property with no visible security. Almost 80% of those polled said that a simple home alarm system would prevent them from targeting a property.

In just one burglary hit, a thief can cash in on an average of £487 of goods – the average insurance claim, however, is over £1200.

Friedland, who research as commissioned to mark UK Home Security Week 2011, polled 50 burglars in their survey, all of whom were convicted earlier this year.

“We’re living in the age of the digital criminal and people are taking advantage of social media to access information about would-be victims. We’ll tell them even when we’re going away on holidays. We will let them know that we’re not in. We’re inviting them round to our house,” said Richard Taylor, one of the convicted burglars interviewed in the survey.

(Source: Friedland. Image credit: Branislav Senic via Shutterstock.)