privacy settings on FacebookIt’s important to consider factors of privacy (or the lack of it) when using social media. Facebook understands that privacy is a major concern for many of its users, so it created ways for people to have control over who can see the information they share. Besides going into your account privacy settings to see your options, you can also use a tool called “Privacy Checkup” to help guide you to different types of privacy settings.

Some of the things you can control related to privacy include:

  • Who can see your future posts?
  • Who can see your past posts?
  • Who can see your stories?
  • Who can see posts you’re tagged in on your profile?
  • Who can share your posts to their stories?
  • Who can see what others post on your profile?
  • What companies, apps, and websites can access data from your Facebook account?
  • Do you want to block anyone so they can’t contact you through Facebook?
  • Who can send you friend requests?
  • How can people find you on Facebook? (For example, can they find you through your mobile phone number or
  • email?)
  • Do you want search engines to be able to find you on Facebook? (This can be set but is not guaranteed to work.)

Privacy Issues Related to Tagging

Facebook offers a feature called Timeline Review that can be turned on. This means that if someone tags you, your approval is required before the tag can appear on your profile.

Another feature called Tag Review gives you control over tags made by others in the comments of your posts. Both of these features are turned off by default but can be turned on in account settings. Your account Activity Log is where you can change the visibility of posts and pictures in which you were tagged in the past.

What you can’t do

You can’t stop Facebook from collecting your data. It’s in the company’s Terms of Service.

You can, however, restrict the way in which Facebook uses your data. For example, Facebook allows you to alter the list of interests it has gathered for you. It also allows you to disable ad targeting based on your relationship status, employer, job title, and education. You can also choose not to allow Facebook to display your social interactions, such as, “Bobby Blake likes this page.”

Click here for a video tour of your Facebook profile settings.

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