Have you ever felt like Facebook was spying on you? Or wondered how the “People You May Know” feed seems to suggest everyone you’ve ever met throughout your life? Or why the promoted ads you see feature items sitting in your online shopping cart? Sometimes Facebook’s good guesses are just plain spooky.
These good guesses have made Facebook user privacy a hot topic lately, as many are beginning to voice concerns over exactly how much information Facebook collects about its users. As cyber threats and capabilities continue to evolve, user privacy rights and platform transparency will continue to be a topic of concern for many. The ‘book might not be going anywhere for the time being, but here’s what you should be aware of.
- You can’t actually have a fully private account.
Not everyone wants to be found on Facebook-they might need it for work purposes or some other reason. But hiding your Facebook account isn’t really an option anymore. One of Facebook’s many internal updates lets users search the entirety of the network, as well as the removal of some privacy settings (such as hiding your Facebook).
This is problematic for a few reasons. First and foremost, you can’t actually “hide” your profile and prevent people from sending friend requests anymore, because these are your only options:
And, since Facebook now requires a phone number to have an account on the network, the privacy options for hiding your number aren’t exactly airtight either:
Not every Facebook user is comfortable with everyone or even their Facebook friends having their number, which makes these privacy limitations problematic.
- Adjusting privacy settings isn’t always that easy.
While there are ways around these privacy settings on Facebook, they’re not exactly easy to find. Another user found a way to hide who you’re friends with, but it’s not listed or even mentioned under “Privacy” in the settings page.