How to Protect Your Privacy on Facebook

Posted on July 9th 2014

How to Protect Your Privacy on Facebook

Privacy has never been so important since social media became part of our lives… and we started living our lives on them. But how protected are you online? Do you know who can see your pictures on Facebook or the posts you are tagged in? If you can’t answer right now on the top of your head, I suggest you check your Privacy Settings and protect your data and information. Especially if you are looking for a job right now. Employers now more than often check the social media accounts of any prospective employee. Facebook is constantly making changes so it’s also good to check regularly.

Before you review your privacy settings, establish friends lists. It will make the whole process easier afterwards as you will be able to exclude individuals but also complete lists from seeing your posts and photos. Facebook creates some lists by default to help: Close Friends, Restricted List, etc. Review those from here: https://www.facebook.com/bookmarks/lists. You can create new lists from there as well. To add a friend to any list, when on the person’s profile, click on “Friends” at the bottom on his/her cover pic and then check the appropriate list.

Who can look for you on Facebook?

If you don’t want anyone to be able to search for you and find your profile, from the menu on the top right (the "arrow" icon), choose Settings, then Privacy, and check the different sections under “Who can look me up.”

Who can see what you post on your profile?

From the same page, click on “Edit” next to “Who can see your future posts.” You can either choose Public (everyone can see, whether they are your friends or not), Friends (only your friends can see), Custom (you will tell specifically who can and who can’t). You can select the people or lists, or exclude some from your Friends list. Lastly, you can choose Only Me (self-explanatory).

You can go further and review all the posts you have ever posted or been tagged in in your “Activity log.”

Who can post on your profile?

On the left side of the screen, click on “Timeline and Tagging” and “Edit” next to “Who can post on your timeline,” and choose who can post on your timeline.

Who can see the posts you are tagged in?

From the same page, click on “Edit" next to “Who can see posts you’ve been tagged in on your timeline.”

Who can see what other people post on your timeline?

Still from the same page, click on “Edit” on the line following the one above.

Control how you are tagged

You can turn on the option to review the posts and photos you are tagged in before they are being posted on your timeline. Do it from the same page, in the last section.

Who can see your pictures?

Go to your Albums in your Photos. The icon at the bottom right of each album tells you who can see it. You can change an album's privacy setting by clicking on this icon. In your Timeline photos, Cover photos, Mobile uploads, Instagram Photos, and Profile pictures albums, you can change the privacy for each photo if you’d like.

Who can see your info?

You can edit the privacy settings of every info of your profile by going to the “About” section and click on the “Edit” buttons.

Block users and apps

From the "Settings" page, click on “Blocking” on the left side of the page to control the users and apps you want to block.

More privacy measures:

You cam enable email login notifications to know when someone log-in to your profile from a different computer, browser or app that the ones you usually use. Click on “Security” on the left from the "Settings"page and tune the Login notifications on. Lastly, change your password regularly.

When you have done all your changes, check the result by clicking on "..." icon at the top right of your profile page (next to Activity Log), and choose “View As.” There you can see how the Public see your profile and you can type any name of your friends to see how he/she sees it as well. You can also check your Activity log to review every single post or picture ever shared by you or by someone else on your profile.

Have a look also at Facebook’s Data Use Policy and Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.

Jennifer Bourne

Jennifer Bourne

I am a social media editor & strategist. I write about social media, films and TV series, and everything French (on My French Life). Born and raised in France, but New Yorker at heart.

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