5 Facebook safety Tips

These days, Facebook may be the single best way online to keep in touch with friends, associates, far-flung family members, and people with similar interests. But if you’re not careful, it’s probably also the site most likely to get you into trouble.

Virtually every week, there’s another news report about employers using Facebook to evaluate or screen employees or potential employees, making assumptions about character, trustworthiness, or conduct based upon Facebook postings or “friends.”

Girlfriends and boyfriends, husbands and wives, friends and neighbours can check out each other’s Facebook pages with ease, possibly jumping to erroneous conclusions about what shows up.

So how can you enjoy what Facebook has to offer while limiting your risk? Follow these steps:

Privacy Settings

Whether you’re active or not on Facebook, if you haven’t visited the Privacy Settings area, you should put this on the top of your to-do list. In short, Facebook pages get indexed very well by the major search engines, and unless you know both what’s on your page and what could be on your page as a result of friends’ postings, you should take control pronto.

From Facebook, click Account in the upper right-hand corner, and from the drop-down menu, choose Privacy Settings. The Choose Your Privacy Settings page opens. Under Sharing on Facebook, go directly to the “Customise settings” link at the bottom of the Settings table, and make the most appropriate selections for what you wish to share with the world, your friends, and friends of your friends.

But don’t stop there. Under the Connecting on Facebook section, click the “View Settings” link. The Connecting on Facebook page appears, and from there you make important decisions such as whether you can be found as a result of a standard search on Facebook and whether others can view your list of friends.

Keep Private

Consider Facebook a close relative of email. That means that anything you say, any picture you post, any member you befriend can be made public without too much trouble – regardless of your privacy settings. In the digital age, after all, everyone knows how to copy and paste, and screen captures can easily link you with a post on your wall. If you really want something to remain private, don’t post it on Facebook.

Reign in third-party apps

A growing number of third-party social networking applications and websites — such as TweetDeck for Twitter and Digsby for instant messaging — are asking for access to your Facebook account so that updates can be sent two ways. Don’t allow such access requests unless you know what you’re getting into. Using third-party tools that are tied into Facebook might make you appear “online” on Facebook far more often than you actually are, for example – a potentially embarrassing situation.

Even when you do allow third-party access to your Facebook account, it’s a good idea to visit the Apps and Websites section of your Facebook Privacy Settings page to see which programmes have been granted access. From Facebook, click Account, Privacy Settings,and then under Apps and Websites, click the “Edit your settings” link. Adjust the settings appropriately.

Houseclean regularly

It may seem like a fine idea to accept all of your five most recent friend requests. But inevitably one or two of them will prove to be a nuisance, as they hog your wall with posts and come to resemble spammers with the number of updates they provide.

Pruning friends is nothing to be ashamed of, and you should do it on a regular basis. Don’t worry about whether your friends will be notified if you remove them. Facebook does not send out a notice to people you have removed as friends.

Deactivate if you don’t use

If keeping an eye on your Facebook account is proving to be too much trouble, or if you started a Facebook account and never use it, take the time at least to deactivate your account. Doing so will rid you of the worry of what does and does not show up on your Facebook page. To deactivate, click Account in the upper-right hand corner of your page, and select Account Settings. At the very bottom of the choices on the resulting screen, find Deactivate Account, and click the “deactivate” link to the right.

Note, however, that deactivating your Facebook account is not the same as deleting it. With a deactivated account, you might still receive emails from the site. To delete your account, you’ll need to visit the Help center (under Account), search for the “permanently delete” question, follow the link, and read the directions. Or you can simply click this link: http://on.fb.me/3qsIFP. If you’re logged in to Facebook, you’ll be taken directly to the Delete page.

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6 Responses to “5 Facebook safety Tips”

  1. Fiona says:

    Bless you for taking the time to describe the terminlogy for the rookies!

  2. Scottie says:

    Really like the modern layout. I enjoyed the information. Thanks for this brilliant blog.

  3. Philip Fabin says:

    I appreciate the personal thoughts and opinions, but would be much happier with logical and well thought out responses.

  4. Yi Akamiro says:

    Good morning, This is an outstanding post, but I was wondering how do you suscribe to the RSS feed?

  5. Het Nassau says:

    People have to remember that this is a Public social networking site which means that profiles are also public. People are entitled to visit your page as many times as they like. It becomes abuse when an abusive posting is made or they use knowledge of your profile for abuse. If your privacy settings are not properly adjusted, anyone can have access to your name, your photos, your family, your friends, where you work, where you went to school, email addresses, phone numbers, your postings on your page and your postings on others. If you post that you are going on holiday on a public site for anyone to see, don’t be surprised if you get burgled!

    There are 3 easy steps to setting up a Facebook profile. What they DON’T show is how important it is to look at….

    1.Go to ‘Account’ (top right of page) Click.
    2.Click on ‘Privacy Settings’
    3.Go through each option on the right hand side of the page. Click ‘Apply’
    4.On page ‘Choose Your Privacy Settings’ there is a heading underneath called ‘Connecting on Facebook’. Click on ‘View Settings’
    5.Go through each option
    6.Click on ‘Preview my Profile’ (what non-friends see when they look at your page)

    At the bottom of list there is ‘Customise Settings’. Click
    Go through each option and save.
    Take the tick off the box by ‘Enable Public Search’

    NOW you’re safe.
    This will stop a lot of bullying, harassment and stalking. Social networking sites are perfect playgrounds for turning into bullying network sites. Make sure only your friends can see your friends list.

    Facebook should not even allow people to post until they have advised them of these steps.


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