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Lots of folks don't use or even know about the settings.
Below are nine tips from Consumer Reports that will help users understand and utilize privacy tools:
” Think before typing. Even if a user deletes his/her account (which takes Facebook about a month), some info can remain in Facebook's computers for up to 90 days.
” Regularly check Facebook exposure. Each month, users should check out how their page looks to others. Review individual privacy settings if necessary.
” Protect basic information. Set the audience for profile items, such as town or employer. And users should remember: Sharing info with “friends of friends” could expose them to tens of thousands.
” Know what can't be protected. Each user's name and profile picture are public. To protect one's identity, they should not use a photo, or use one that doesn't show their face.
” “unPublic” the wall. Set the audience for all previous wall posts to just friends.
” Turn off Tag Suggest. If users would rather not have Facebook automatically recognize their face in photos, they could disable that feature in their privacy settings. The information will be deleted.
” Block apps and sites that snoop. Unless users intercede, friends can share personal information about them with apps. To block that, they should use controls to limit the info apps can see.
” Keep wall posts from friends. Users don't have to share every wall post with every friend. They can also keep certain people from viewing specific items in their profile.
” When all else fails, deactivate. When a user deactivates their account, Facebook retains their profile data but the account is made temporarily inaccessible. Deleting an account, on the other hand, makes it inaccessible forever.
Inside the June 2012 issue of Consumer Reports
Additional findings from Consumer Reports latest State of the Net Report are featured in the June issue of Consumer Reports magazine available on newsstands on May 8th or online at http://www.ConsumerReports.org In addition to the cover article on Facebook and user privacy, the issue also features a broader report on online security and what consumers can do to protect themselves.
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