Perhaps more than any other company, Facebook has been at the forefront of internet security and privacy. Who can forget the time when founder Mark Zuckerberg spoke to Congress about the website and its privacy matters. One senator, Ed Markey, even said to Zuckerberg that “Your time of invading our privacy, promoting toxic content and preying on children and teens is over.” This made a lot of people very aware of their privacy on Facebook, and probably caught your attention, as well. So what do you need to know about your privacy and Facebook? Here are some quick facts.
You’re Tracked Even When Logged Out
Have you ever been scrolling through Facebook and you see an advertisement for something that’s almost completely random? That’s because when you’re agreeing to the terms and services for Facebook, you’re consenting to the website tracking your browsing and search histories. This allows them to cater advertising that’s very specific, and you’re likely to see a lot of Amazon links to items that you were thinking about. Even if you don’t have a Facebook account, the company is still able to track that as part of their analytics dealings.
Limit What People Can See
If you only want your closest friends to see what your new Facebook status is or the photos that you’re sharing, you can restrict content from your profile. This is a great tool for those that are in a job hunt and don’t want recruiters seeing pictures of you drinking too many mai tais on your most recent vacation. While on your Facebook profile, click the settings gear in the upper right. From there, choose ‘view privacy shortcuts’ and then ‘see more privacy settings.’ Lastly, click on ‘limit who can see past posts’ and confirm who exactly sees what on your profile.
You’ve likely gotten a Facebook Messenger alert from someone that you haven’t talked to in a very long time and the message contains what appears to be an obvious virus link. That’s because countless people have their accounts compromised on Facebook every day to the point where it can be nauseating. No fear, though, as Facebook does have a two-factor authentication option. With this, you’re pretty much guaranteeing yourself that you won’t be hacked and won’t have to start over. Setting it up is easy and can be accessed from the settings tab on your Facebook page.
Avoid the Tag
One of the worst parts of early Facebook was that when someone tagged you, everyone could instantly see it. Whether it’s a bad picture or someone saying something unsavory and including you in the post for some reason, nobody wants to be tagged without knowing. Thankfully, Facebook has a feature where you can review each tag. Head to the privacy tab and then click ‘profile’ and ‘tagging’ to get started. Like that picture of you and your friends having dinner? Go ahead and approve to have it on your profile.
Still worried about where your data might be headed and how it’s going to be used? It’s always going to be a point of conversation when it comes to Facebook. As Zuckerberg once said, though, “We have a responsibility to protect your data, and if we can’t then we don’t deserve to serve you.”