Facebook has upped its privacy game again in the last few weeks, this time prompting users to take advantage of an easy-to-use Privacy Check on personal settings and permissions. There are three things are worth noting, all of which should prompt parents to remind teens the doing a re-check is a good idea. Those things are:
- Facebook changes its privacy policies from time to time
- Many people either ignore their privacy settings and Facebook’s policies, or set the permissions once and forget about them
- This prompt is exactly the kind of thing that teens have been conditioned to ignore
The second screen you will be taken to covers who can see what you post, both as a default for all posts, and customizable for each individual post. The options are
- “Public” – everyone with a Facebook account can see your posts
- “Friends” – all of your Facebook friends
- “Friends except Acquaintances” – if you categorize a friend as “acquaintance”, you will have more control over what they can see
- “Only me” – to turn Facebook into a private diary
- “Custom” – with the custom option, for each post you can select which friends will see your post, or which friends will be blocked from seeing a post
Next is the “Your Apps” section. This will detail all other apps and sites where you have authorized Facebook logins for that property, or have agreed to share some or all or your Facebook data with that property. Did you really want to do that? Do you even remember doing it?
Last is the “Your Profile” section. Facebook would love for you to have listed, publicly, a phone number, email address, your real birthday, (mine is fake and I change it periodically – I’m not a fan of Facebook birthday wishes) your hometown and anything else that you’d care to share. Here you can see which of your personal data that Facebook has, and who can see it. Review it carefully.
Yes, Facebook still wants to use your data, and sell it to advertisers, but they are more privacy-friendly than they used to be. Adult users and teens should take advantage of the new controls and better transparency.
Contact ThirdParent any time for help and resources for monitoring child and teen internet activity.