Thursday, 24 October 2013

Securing Your Facebook Account in Six Steps

As you are aware, we teach your daughter to consider her digital footprint and to actively create one that is thoughtful, insightful, highlights her strengths and sends a positive message about her character. An important distinction needs to be made about the difference between a purposefully created digital footprint that is designed for others to see and our personal, private information that is not.  Too often, many fail to properly secure their private information and consider what could happen if it was in the wrong hands, especially when using social media.  

Dennis O'Reilly posted a great article on CNet last month about six easy steps to securing your Facebook account. The importance of doing this yourself and encouraging your daughter to protect her privacy is crucial in an age where prospective employers will screen your daughter before ever granting her an interview.

Step One: See Your Profile as Others See It

Do you know what others see when they access your Facebook page? Why not find out:

  • Click the wheel in the upper right
  • Select Privacy
  • Select Timeline and Tagging
  • Click on View As on the right of "Who can view things on my timeline?"
  • Change your settings if you don't like what people can see about you.

Step Two:  Limit Who can add Content to your Timeline and Add Tags

Before you move away make sure you have limited access to who can add things to your timeline, whether you want to review posts in the "Who can add things to my timeline" section. Then check your tags in the "How can I manage tags people add and tagging suggestions" to make sure you can review tags, limit tag suggestions that may look like you and limit the audience for a post you are tagged in. 

Step Three: Make Sure You are Browsing Securely

Are you using secure browsing? Check by clicking on Security on the left and checking it is enabled (it should be by default but check anyway)

Step Four: Limit Access to You and Your Facebook Stuff

Limit who can view your future posts by clicking on Privacy on the left and ensuring that settings are for your friends. The same can be done with past posts by limiting posts you've shared on your timeline to only your friends (this action cannot be undone - if you wish to make things public you have to individually go through the activity log).

Step Five: Control Your Apps

How many apps are you sharing your information with? Click on Apps on the left and take a look in the apps you use setting.  I found heaps of old games that I hadn't played for over a year which still had access to my account.  Some apps gather a lot of information about you, information that could compromise your privacy.  Carefully consider what information you are giving to whom. Look at the "apps other use" to see how many you have granted access to your personal information to in the guise of requests from your friends.  Instant personalisation automatically shares your information with your friends when they log onto certain websites.  This setting is set to "on" by default, sharing information you didn't know you were sharing.

Step Six: Opt Out of Ads

Under the Ads section on the left are some new settings which allow you to opt out in case Facebook decides to start allowing third parties (organisations outside of facebook) to use your name and image in ads in the future. Ever wondered why your sister keeps recommending goji berries to you as a weight loss miracle? Social ads trace activities outside of facebook and make recommendations based on this. You can turn this off too.

For the full and original article click here.