Catching thieves with Flickr
Social networks can not only be used to make new contacts, but also to track down thieves as events last week at Flickr.com showed. Four laptops and two iMacs, one of which had a web cam, were stolen from Canadian office services provider WorkSpace. The Flickrbooth plug-in for Apple's Photo Booth was installed on the iMac with the web cam. The program automatically sends photos taken with the web cam to the selected Flickr account. An employee at WorkSpace was naturally surprised when he looked into his Flickr account and saw that a new image had been uploaded – one of a tattooed man posing in front of the stolen iMac. The man apparently knew that the iMac was taking pictures of him, but not that it was sending them to Flickr.
The image quickly became viral in forums and blogs all over the world. Shortly after, the suspected thief turned himself over to the police according to a report in the Vancouver Sun. He claims that he bought the computer from a friend of a friend but wished to return it. WorkSpace now hopes to get additional information about who the actual thieves are.