Wednesday, August 14, 2013
You are a private person and have recently joined Facebook. You keep hearing news about Facebook giving out user data, people getting fired for things they have said on Facebook and other scary stuff. Though it is pretty simple to keep things private on Facebook, you have to actively go and enable the settings. Facebook leaves it to you how much you want to share and how much you want to keep private. Here is how you can maximize your privacy and still have fun on Facebook.
Choose your friends carefully
Do you really want to be friends with someone who sat next to you twice in high school? Do you want your boss and co-workers to see all your photos? If you are not in school (actually not even then), your popularity is not determined by the number of Facebook friends you have. Stick to the people you actually care about.
Control what you want to share
Go over the privacy options carefully one by one and select what you want everyone to know, and what things you would like to keep among friends. Decide if you want your timeline to be found on search engines, or keep it private. If you don’t set it to private, when anyone searches your name on Google or some other search engine, your profile along with your profile picture will come up. Potential employers tend to run your name through Google, so choose carefully especially if you are job hunting. Go over your activity log periodically and delete or unlike things which you do not want to be linked to you. If you allow your friends to tag you in photos, be careful about whom they share things with.
Ad settings and Application Privacy
Facebook shows you ads based on your browsing pattern. You can hide ads by hovering on the ‘X’ and choosing from the drop-down menu. The ‘Instant Personalization’ setting allows your information to be shared with other sites that you visit. The ‘Like’ button present on almost every site is something else to be aware of, especially when browsing from a smartphone. Another thing to consider is application privacy. You can set ‘Game and Application activity’ to friends only and then uncheck all the information you don’t want to be accessed through your friends. Otherwise, your friends could unknowingly be sharing your information with the application and its developers every time they use the app.
Always log out
Make it a practice to log out every time and don’t choose auto log-in. Otherwise, you will unwittingly be sharing your private data all over the web while browsing. Secure Me is a useful tool which checks your posts, monitors all your friend’s activities and protects you from viruses.
Securing your privacy on Facebook is not that difficult, you just have to make it a priority and actually check or uncheck boxes. It does not take that long, and you can have a safe and enjoyable experience on Facebook without any nasty surprises.
Danni Smith loves Facebook as much as she loves writing about it. She creates articles and tutorials to help others learn more about Facebook.