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Basic Privacy Settings on Facebook

September 26, 2012

Are you scared to start or nervous about your Facebook profile because of all the privacy horror stories? Don’t be! You have control over what information you share with Facebook, Friends, and the public. If you are smart about the information you share and who you share it with, you’ve lowered your risk of identity theft and other online privacy issues. Here are some simple tips and steps about privacy settings on Facebook.

Information Shared

Sharing information like your favourite movie, pet’s name, and hometown is harmless right? Not exactly. Many people use this information as answers to security questions for forgotten passwords. Be careful that the answer to your security questions for absolutely any account are not provided on Facebook. If you’ve already provided this information on Facebook then change your security questions!

Where Are The Privacy Settings?

1. Click the account menu which looks like an arrow pointing down located at the top far right of any Facebook page.

2. Select Privacy Settings from the dropdown menu.

Where Are The Privacy Settings?

 

Default Privacy

You have three choices for your default privacy.

  • Public, meaning that everything you post will be seen by everyone on Facebook, not just those who are your confirmed friends.

  • Friends, meaning that everything you post will be seen by those who are your confirmed Friends and not by those who are not.

  • Finally, there is custom, which provides you with more privacy options which we will cover below.

Custom Privacy Settings

Custom Privacy Settings

 

Privacy Terminology

  • “Everyone” means that it is public to anyone on Facebook.

  • “Friends” mean those who you have confirmed as a Friend.

  • “Friends of Friends” includes all of the Friends of those who you have confirmed as Friends. So if you had 10 Friends who each had 10 Friends you would have 100 Friends of Friends.

  • “Acquaintances” is a list you can make of your friends you don’t need to stay in close touch with. They will rarely show up in your news feed and you can choose to exclude this list when you make a post.

How You Connect

Here you can control:

  • Who can search for you using the email or phone number you provided Facebook. Your options for this setting include: Everyone, Friends, and Friends of Friends.

  • Who is able to send you a request to be Friends. Your options for this setting include: Everyone, and Friends of Friends.

  • Who is able to send you a private message. A private message is only seen by you and is not posted on your timeline. So for example you may only allow your Friends to post on your timeline; however, you could allow Friends of Friends, or Everyone to send you private messages. Your options for this setting include: Everyone, Friends, and Friends of Friends.

 

Timeline and Tagging

Here you can control:

  • Who can post on your timeline. This means that you are allowing Friends to put comments, videos, and photos on your timeline visible to others. Your options for this setting include: Friends, No One.

  • Who can see what Friends post on your timeline. Your options for this setting include: Everyone, Friends of Friends, Friends, Friends except Acquaintances, Custom, or any of your lists.

  • Whether or not you review posts or photos your Friends tag you in before they appear on your timeline. Your options for this setting include: On (enabled) or Off (disabled). For the most privacy it is recommended to review posts prior to them being posted.

  • Who can see what posts or photos you’ve been tagged in on your timeline. Your options for this setting include: Everyone, Friends of Friends, Friends, Friends except Acquaintances, Custom, or any of your lists.

  • If you review posts or photos you have posted that your Friends tag. Your options for this setting include: On (enabled) or Off (disabled).

Ads, Apps and Websites

  • There are many apps, games, and plugins that can be used on Facebook. You are able to edit the settings of each app, or delete them from Facebook. For privacy ensure you check each app to see who can see posts from this app by clicking Edit Settings from this section. If you are not interested in using apps you can turn off your ability to use apps by clicking Turn off shown below next to the red x.

    Ads, Apps and Websites

  • If you do not want your information used simply uncheck each piece of information. Or leave checkmarks next to the pieces of information you feel comfortable with your Friends using with their apps. How people bring your info to apps they use.

  • Instant Personalization allows Facebook to share your public information in order to tailor your experience on partner websites. Some of these websites include, Bing, Pandora, and TripAdvisor. You are able to enable all of their partner websites with one checkmark. Or leave it unchecked so that this information will not be shared with their partner sites.

  • Public Search allows search engines to show a preview of your timeline when you are searched for. You are able to enable this feature with a checkmark. Or leave it unchecked to not share a preview.

  • Ads allows you to manage your settings for third-party ads, as well as social ads which pair ads and Friends.

    Apps

Limit the Audience for Past Posts

This allows you to “Limit Old Posts” prior to your upgrade to timeline. Please remember that once this is selected in is not possible to reverse.

Blocked People and Apps

Here you can manage any people or apps that you have decided to block.

Choose Your Audience

Even if you have things you post on your timeline only visible to your Friends you are able to chose any of the following options on individual posts. For example this allows you to share a post on a charity you support with Public and keep photos of your family only for Friends.

Choose Your Audience

 

How To Delete Or Unfriend a Friend

1. Go to the page of the person you would like delete/unfriend.

2. Select Unfriend from the dropdown.

Unfriend

PLEASE NOTE: The person you unfriend will not be notified that you unfriended them.

How To Block Someone

1. Click the account menu which looks like an arrow pointing down located at the top far right of any Facebook page.

2. Select Privacy Settings from the dropdown menu.

3. Scroll to the Blocked People and Apps section and click Manage Blocking.

4. Enter the name or email address of the person you want to block and click Block.

OR

1. Go to the page of the person you would like to block.

2. Select Report/Block This Person from the dropdown.

PLEASE NOTE: The person you block will not be notified that you blocked them.

What Don’t You Have Control Over?

Your Public information can be seen by anyone. This includes your name, profile picture, all cover photos, gender, username, user ID (account number), and networks.

View As

If you want to test your privacy setting you can always use the View As tool. When you first go into the View As tool you are viewing your page as the Public sees it.

View As

If you want to see your settings for a certain individual simply enter their name in the box shown below.

View as name

Have a Facebook privacy question we didn’t cover? Please leave your question in the comments below and we’d be happy to help!

Until next time,

Alix
Miss Mediosa – Social Media Management

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