Everything You Need to Know About Facebook Privacy
If you’re a Facebook user, you’ve likely thought twice about closing your account recently. Revelations that Cambridge Analytica harvested the personal information of 50 million unwitting Facebook users has forced the social media masses to seriously question their online privacy.
Wired has compiled this thorough guide on everything you need to know about “how to keep advertisers, third-party apps, strangers, and Facebook itself at bay.” The article gives step-by-step instructions on how to find the (often hidden) privacy settings. And if you still feel overly exposed they'll show you how to walk away entirely.
If you use Facebook, we recommend you read the article in its entirety. But if you must skim, here are the key points:
Delete the Apps. Seriously, do you really need to take another personality quiz? You're granting app and game developers direct insight into your— and possibly your friend’s— Facebook profile (which they can then legally sell to Cambridge Analytica).
Turn off “Ads based on my use of websites and apps.” Just to be clear, your every move online is still being tracked, but this step can control what Facebook does with that information.
Manage your friends. Control who can see your posts by limiting the audience. And while you’re at it, it’s probably a good idea to browse through that friend list and be sure you actually know everyone there.
Did you unknowingly follow or like a Russian propagandist account? Find out for sure here.
If this whole thing has you creeped out and you just want to leave but are feeling sentimental about all the photos you’ll lose access to, Wired has solved this conundrum for you too. Follow these steps to download your account and preserve those memories offline: Head to Settings > General Account Settings > Download a copy of your Facebook data and click Start my archive. Facebook will email you with a download link when it's ready (note that the link does expire.)
Feeling steeled and ready to live life without Facebook? Go to this link right here to permanently delete your profile. *There is a delay of a few days though, and Facebook will cancel your deletion request if you sign back on in the meantime. If you simply can’t trust your fingers not to hit the Facebook app button out of habit, delete it from your phone.