26 August 2019
Your timeline represents who you are, so you control what appears on it. Photo: Bloomberg
Your timeline represents who you are, so you control what appears on it. Photo: Bloomberg

Understand and control your privacy: Facebook offers five tips

That creepy guy from the office has “poked” you, your boss liked that photo of you and your friends at the beach from two years ago, some Eastern European you’ve never met keeps pestering you through private messages, or you’re being inundated with Candy Crush Saga requests.

Sound familiar? Well, you’re in luck because Facebook has got some handy tips to make your social media experience hassle-free.

Facebook Security Team believes that it’s important people using the service understand the many ways you can control who sees the information you choose to share. If you experience unpleasant surprises when sharing on Facebook, that’s bad for you and bad for us.

So please take time to check out these tips and tools:

1. CHOOSE YOUR AUDIENCE. Sometimes you might want to let everyone know that you just read that really thoughtful opinion piece but sometimes you just want to share a post or photo with your friends. On Facebook, you can choose who you want to see each thing you post by using the audience selector that appears when you are posting content. Toggle between public and friends, or another audience choice, to control who sees each thing you post.

Learn more about the audience selector tool in the “How to Post & Share” section of the Facebook Help Centre:

2. IF THEY AREN’T A FRIEND, ‘UNFRIEND’ OR ‘UNFOLLOW’. If there is someone who you no longer want to share stuff with, you can unfriend them by selecting the gear icon in the upper right hand corner of the person’s timeline and click “Unfriend”. Or if that seems too drastic, you can “unfollow” them so that you stop seeing their updates when you log in to Facebook, and mark them as an acquaintance and then share with “friends except acquaintances”. But don’t worry, they won’t receive a notification that you have done this!

If there are someone you really don’t feel comfortable with you can also “Block” them. This not only unfriends the person but also means they can’t talk to you in any way or see anything on your timeline.

Check out these sections of the Facebook Help Centre for more information:

Removing friend 

How do I unfollow someone?

3. KNOW HOW TO TAG AND UNTAG. Adding a “tag” creates a link that people can follow to learn more about a person, place or event. Tagging can be really useful – it can point to your friends or anyone else on Facebook and let people know when they’re in photos or other things you share. So it’s important you know what tagging does and what controls you have.

You can choose to review content that you’re tagged in before it appears on your Timeline and you can choose to hide content that you are tagged in from your timeline or remove a tag so that it doesn’t appear.

Learn more about tagging here:

4. YOUR TIMELINE IS YOUR STORY. Your timeline represents who you are, so you control what appears on it. You can even update your privacy settings to review things you’re tagged in before they go on your timeline.

Use your Activity Log to review individual things you’ve already shared. From Activity Log, you can delete things you may not want to appear on Facebook anymore, you can untag photos and you can change the privacy of past posts.

More details are here:

5. BE EMPOWERED. If you have a burning question about your information on Facebook check out:

If you aren’t quite sure how ads work on Facebook, read this explanation:

The Facebook Help Center also has answers to pretty much any question you are likely to have about how things work on Facebook:

– Contact us at [email protected]


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