ELMIRA, N.Y.(WENY) -- Posting new presents right after receiving them is extremely common with today's use of social media, but it makes you more of a target to robbers who could be watching your social feed. 

"It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of getting something new, I think people just want to be careful. You want to know who your friends are, know your settings on what ever social media platform you have,"says Sergeant Yuri Charlanow, Detective with the Elmira Police Department. "Whether it be seeing the actual merchandise that you post on one of the social media sites or putting packaging materials, empty boxes out on the curb. Criminals will notice that and eventually target your house." 

Electronic store employees along with police will warn you to be more discreet when it comes to discarding big ticket item boxes and bags. Just the boxes alone can tell a thief that there is some valuable merchandise inside. 

"I think their best best is just to make sure they break down the boxes, turn them inside out if need be, if possible and you know you don't have to change your life, but there's certain small steps you can take to protect yourself," says Charlanow. 

Elmira Police suggest taking down any and all numbers on your materials which would help them trace it back to your owner ship. Hopefully you would never need to use this information, but it is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. 

"If we ever happen to end up taking a burglary report, it's always helpful for us to make sure you have the model number, the serial number of the actual equipment. So in an event that does turn up at a second hand store or we find it into someone's possession, we can positively identify it as being yours," Charlanow tells WENY News. 

EPD also told WENY News that if you want to be extra cautious and can afford to do so, have motion senor lights installed on your house and or buy low-grade surveillance equipment.