If you’re on Facebook, the thought of privacy must have crossed your mind more than once. The Facebook-privacy disconnect is forever in the news, obviously never for the right reasons.
No one would want their pictures misused by people whom you don’t trust — or worse, don’t know. Good news amidst the horror however, is that it can all be controlled. We identified five most common concerns that people face and how to fix those concerns with a few clicks of the mouse.
1. Control the reach of your updates
Control who gets to see your updates whenever you post anything on your wall with this simple option. Before the post button, there’s a drop down menu which gives you various options for the visibility of your updates. The default option for your updates is ‘Public’. If you check the option ‘Friends’, only people on your friends list can view that update. You can also hide updates from specific people by clicking the option ‘Custom’. This will open another window where you can restrict your update to specific people in your friends list.
Path: Facebook Profile> Update Status> Click on “Public” to access the drop down> Click “Friends”
Result: Allows you to selectively post content and have complete control over who gets to view it.
2. Control who tags you
Right after a party, a random person who you met at the party uploads pictures of you and tags you. If you don’t want to get embarrassed in those situations, you might want to disable tagging. In Privacy Settings there’s an option called ‘How tags work’. There are different options available to you here.
If you select ‘off’ on all options there, Facebook will not allow people to tag you in posts and pictures anymore. For all the old tags that are already present on your profile, you can change their visibility to just ‘friends’ or ‘friends of friends’ too.
Path: Privacy settings > How tags work > Click “Edit Settings”
Result: Random people can no more check you into places or tag you in pictures and other content.
3. Control who sees your content
Every post on Facebook was a public post before the limited sharing feature was put in place. And because of that new feature, another option called ‘Limit the Audience for Past Posts’ was introduced in Privacy Settings. This setting enables you to limit the visibility of your old posts that can be seen by everyone.
However, remember that this is a global change on your profile and it cannot be undone with just one click. If you want to make your posts visible again, you would have to go to each post and change settings for them.
Path: Privacy settings > Limit the Audience for Past Posts > Click on “Manage Past Post Visibility”
Result: People browsing through your profile will no longer have access to your older posts.
4. Control the visibility of your profile
Change the settings of your profile’s visibility to safeguard yourself from creepy stalkers and other nosy people on the Internet. ‘How you connect’ is a privacy setting where you can control the visibility of your profile. You can change the option as to who can look up your profile, name, or contact info on Facebook to just ‘friends’. Prevent random people from sending you a friend request. And, you can control who gets to see your wall posts by others on your profile too.
Path: Privacy settings > How you connect > Click “Edit Settings”
Result: Prevent random people from posting anything on your wall and prevent the visibility of your timeline to people even among your friends.
5. Control what information apps can access
On Facebook, apps have better access to information to your profile than you can imagine. You should always use trusted apps and link your profile with trusted websites. Apps can get access to your info if your friends access the apps and they have the access to your info.
However, you can disable sections of your profile that you want to hide from the apps. This option can be found in ‘Apps and websites’ in Privacy Settings. If you uncheck the options that are shown there, none of your info can be accessed by the apps.
Path: Privacy settings > Apps and websites > How people bring your info to apps they use > Click “Edit Settings”
Result: Your information is kept private and none of the applications can access it and use it in any way.
6. Control your result in public search
You can control the visibility of your profile in public searches. This means even if you have a profile on Facebook, people wouldn’t be able to find your profile just by searching on it for your name.
This will keep out half of the world away from you and your data on Facebook. However, your friends will be able to search for you because you already are in their friends list. And your friends’ friends can see your profile. This option won’t make your profile completely invisible.
Path: Privacy settings > Apps and websites > Public search > Click “Edit Setting
Result: You become invisible to everyone on Facebook apart from your friends and their friends.
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About Sashank Nandury
Sashank was an accountant before he woke up on the wrong side of the bed one day and decided that he wanted to be a writer. As a result of which the erstwhile dominant left side of his brain is at constant war with the right – and he deals with both. He's an associate editor for wwwireframe. He believes that penguins have a world domination conspiracy going for them.