Discovering the right balance between Facebook privacy and Facebook fun can be difficult. This fun is a double-edged sword that enables us to keep in touch with friends no matter where they are living, although it also openly shares information that only a few years ago, we would never dream of placing online. You can look for people depending on where they have gone to school, the city they live in, club membership, whom they are related to…but when is it too excessive?

Your birthday is the very first piece of information gathered once you have registered, and it is terrific receiving birthday well-wishes from family and friends when it shows up in their newsfeed. Although at the same time, Facebook is sending you funny memes and balloons, your birthday will be public information. It appears innocuous, but if you call your bank, doctor, or other organization, what is the first question they ask you to validate you are whom you say you are? They ask your birthdate! Some password retrieval systems will even ask you questions like ‘which high school did you go to?’ or ‘what is your mother’s maiden name?’ presuming that this is information just you would know. But, you have now openly supplied it on Facebook…Whoops!

We all heard the stories of individuals who have been fired from their job when not-so-wholesome photos or statements have gone public, and worse, viral. If you are a professional, you have a reputation to maintain; you do not want photos from a wild private party showing up, especially if you went Old School. Although you cannot control what other people do with pictures they take, you will be able to manage whether or not they will be able to tag you in them.

Luckily, settings are available on Facebook, allowing you to manage who sees what happens and what information when someone tags you. Despite what you might have heard or noticed being shared around in a Facebook share hoax, you will not have full control over your Facebook privacy and is easy to adjust.

How to Verify and Alter Your Facebook Privacy Preferences

1. Look at how your account appears to an outsider

From your Facebook homepage follow the steps below:

Click on your name on the blue bar on the top of the page.

Click the three dots next to ‘View Activity Log.’
Change your facebook privacy
Choose the ‘View as…’

2. Run a swift privacy assessment

Click on the question mark in the upper right corner
Select the ‘privacy checkup.’

Reflect on what you want to share – do people have to know the YEAR of you were born or only your birthday? Your family and buddies will still get a notification, and will maybe receive the balloons.

3. Edit advanced privacy

While the checkup includes the most obvious information, it is possible to go a lot further.

Click on the V-shaped drop down on the right side of the question mark.
Go to settings.
Select ‘privacy.’

4. Change timeline and tagging

Through the privacy settings, you will be able to expressly manage who could tag you, who can view or share the tagged content, as well as what displays on your newsfeed.

Facebook Privacy Preferences


Facebook has updated their theme, and if you have changed to the new theme, that is ok. The steps are not much different. However, that said, we will make another post in a couple of days title Privacy on Facebook: Part2, with directions on how to navigate the new Facebook to do this same thing.

Strengthening your Facebook privacy takes just a few minutes, but it might save you a whole bunch of problems in the future.

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Joe on facebook privacy
Facebook privacy can be a double-edged sword.
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