Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Privacy Settings On Facebook – A “How To” Guide

Hi there, I hope you've had a good Christmas & a good start to the new year! I've tried to come up with a very basic guide to set up privacy features on Facebook for you or your kids (if they use it), although i'm pretty sure that this little guide of mine will be out of date very soon since the privacy settings on Facebook are forever changing. Until a few weeks ago, I didn't realise HOW much they had changed since the last time i'd set everything up.

When you first log into Facebook, you'll be presented with your Newsfeed – this is where you will see updates of everything your friends are doing which refreshes frequently. Generally, only the people you interact with most will appear.

To change the privacy settings for your account you will need to select them in the top right hand corner of the screen:

Once you're in your privacy settings page, you will see an explanation of how the privacy settings work. You can also select the “Default Privacy” options of “Public”, “Friends” or “Custom” - I have selected Custom for my own account – here you can choose to share your posts with most of your friends and stop certain friends from seeing them or vice versa.

Once you have decided on your default privacy, there are quite a few other things you need to look at which can be found on the same page as your default privacy options:

If you click on “edit settings” next to “How you connect”, you will see a popup box displaying how people will be able to find you on Facebook and contact you:

 Again, here you can customise these options if you wish.

The next option is controlling how tags work. Tags are when someone uploads a photo of you or updates a status and wants to include you in it. Other people that are friends with the tagee will be able to see your name on their photos/status updates and click on them to see your profile. If you don't want strangers to be able to see your kids' profile when their friends upload photos of them (which will probably happen as some point!) then i'd suggest turning this option off.
Next is “Apps, games and websites” - in here you can change the option so your name won't be discoverable via a search engine (Public Search) – I'd also suggest turning this off for your child. Another option to keep an eye on is “Instant Personalisation”, this isn't available to me yet but is enabled as a default so it's worth checking to see if you can disable it. This allows partners of Facebook to display YOUR image on their own websites.

If you're concerned about what information you or your child is sharing with Facebook, you can download a copy of all your information from the “Account Settings” which can be found just under Privacy Settings in the dropdown menu in the top right hand corner.

I hope you've found this little guide useful. If I haven't explained something then feel free to ask me and i'll try to help – although I don't work for Facebook so I may not be able to!

Thanks For Reading

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