Fending for yourself on Facebook

Click here for a Really Useful Article on staying discreet, that is, keeping your ‘lives’ discrete, on Facebook. Some choice excerpts:

Step 1: Make Friend Lists
Friend lists, like they sound, are lists for categorizing your friends into various groups. The nice thing about this feature is that once you set these lists up, you won’t have to do it again. We suggest that you put your work colleagues and professional acquaintances into a friend list designated “work,” personal friends you’re not very close with into a list called “Acquaintances,” and people you’re related to into a list called “Family.” Those three main categories will separate out the groups of “friends” who you may want to hide some information from.

Step 2: Who Can See What on Your Profile
… think carefully about the sorts of things you want public and the things you want private. Should “everyone” get to see photos you’re tagged in? Or would you like to limit this only to those you’ve specifically chosen as Facebook friends? … You can also block certain groups from seeing these sections, too.

Step 3: Who Can See Your Address and Phone Number
Did you list your address and phone number on Facebook? While that’s a handy feature, you may not want everyone you friended to have this information.

Step 4: Change Who Can Find You on Facebook via Search
Sick of getting friend requests from old high school pals? While for some the beauty of Facebook is that it lets you reconnect with everyone you ever knew throughout your life, others find this intrusive and annoying. You’re not friends with any of these people anymore for a reason, right?

Step 5: Stop Sharing Personal Info with Unknown Applications
… Using Facebook’s default settings, you’re unknowingly sharing a plethora of personal information (and your friends’ info too!) with various Facebook applications and the developers who created them. … Believe it or not, … once you authorize an application, you’re telling it that it’s OK to access any information associated with your account that it requires to work. While some developers may only pull what’s actually required, many others just pull in everything they can. Scary, isn’t it?


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