Millions of people are connected online with Facebook, but are you sharing too much? Here are seven things you shouldn't do on the site, regardless of how keen you are on socialising online.
1) Never settle for the default settings
The people behind Facebook are keen for you to share your details with the world. The more you share, the more people you connect to, the more people want to sign up. However, sharing everything with all and sundry isn't a good idea. To check and opt out of the recommended settings, open your Facebook page, click on 'Account' in the top right of the screen and then 'Privacy settings'.
The 'Recommended settings' mean that your status, photo, posts, bio, favourite quotation, family and relationship details are shared with everyone. Photos and videos you're tagged in, religious and political views and birthdays are shared with Friends of friends. Permission to comment on your posts, places you check in to, and contact information are shared with Friends only.
Change all to Friends only, and you're safe from the prying world.
2) Never agree to have yourself listed on search engines
Telling your Facebook mates what's going on in your life is one thing, but letting any old Tom, Dick or Harriet see your Facebook page via a web search is another.We would recommend opting to never have your Facebook details shared with other search engines.
To make sure you aren't go to your Facebook page, 'Account', 'Privacy Settings', 'Apps and websites', then 'Public Search'. De-tick the 'Enable Public Search' button.
3) Never put your address and phone number on Facebook
Unless you want app developers knowing where you live and how to contact you we wouldn't recommend putting any real details in to Facebook for the time being. That means no home address and no phone number.
4) Never let apps lie dormant
One for the advanced Facebook user: Never let an app continue to suck your information once you've done with it.Remember the days when you played Zombies or maybe Vampires? Well those apps are most likely still active on your account and sucking in your personal data. Scary, huh?
Nip over to your Facebook page, go to 'Account', 'Privacy Setting' and then 'Apps, games and websites', and remove the ones you don't want.
5) Never let your mum see your tagged photos
You've had one too many drinks and been tagged for all your friends, colleagues and family to see you not looking too hot. Not good. To avoid this, go to your Facebook page, 'Account', 'Privacy Settings', and make sure Photos and videos you're tagged in is set to Friends only.
Taking this to the next level, you can also block individual people on top of those groups of people. Go to 'Customise settings', 'Photos and videos I'm tagged in' and chose to edit settings. Here from the drop-down menu chose 'customise' again and then start listing the people you want to hide your photos from.
6) Never give out your date of birth
What's one of the first security questions you are ever asked when you deal with your bank? What's your date of birth? And yet here you are giving it away on your Facebook page for all to see. You should never let people see the year you were born.
Go to your Facebook page, 'Profile', then 'Edit profile'. In the first pane ('Basic information') chose as to whether you want to 'Show my full date of birth in my Profile', 'Show only day and month in my Profile' or 'Don't show my birthday in my profile'. If you still want birthday wishes go for the second option.
7) Never broadcast that you're going on holiday
Always be careful about what you say on your status updates and never give out any personal information that you don't want getting into the wrong hands.
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Written by Stuart Miles