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Protecting your private social media accounts, Part II

You may already limit who can see your FB posts

More on Facebook (fb) privacy with an intro to Google+ security

You may already limit who can see your FB posts and perhaps have taken some of the other security measures described in my last post. While most of us don’t want to be invisible on FB, (one extreme setting actually allows you to use FB as an online ‘journal,’ where no one can see what you’ve posted)–with so many widely publicized hacks, it’s wise to apply basic security measures.


Additional FB security tactics

  • Create Custom Facebook Restricted Groups so you can determine who sees your posts on an individual basis.
  • Limit who can see your old Timeline posts, including what others post on your timeline. You can restrict visibility of your past updates either entirely or on a post-by-post basis by choosing either (1) you and friends or just (2) you. 
  • Disallow friends from adding others to the conversation about a particular post. I’ve known some folks who only occasionally visit FB, post something controversial, then check back a week later no awareness of having triggered a nasty debate that spilled over into scores of non-friends.
  • Be aware that FB allows friends to tag you in photos and videos that they think are of you. It’s safest to limit that function by selecting ‘No One.’
  • While you can disable all third party FB connections like apps, websites and plugins, this is a drastic measure and not generally recommended.
  • If you don’t enjoy spending a lot of time on FB, at least limit others’ ability to share apps with you. Just check the appropriate box on “Apps Others Use.”

Basic Google + security options–

To avoid involuntarily being opted in to new kinds of Google+ visibility, visit your account regularly to ensure you’re in control of what others see.

  • As with all social media platforms, be aware that identity thieves are trawling for personal details like schools you’ve attended, where you’ve worked, your birthday, etc. I, for one, like being remembered on my birthday, but the date I post is off by several days.
  • As with FB, if you don’t want your information made available to search engines, uncheck the “Help others find my profile in search results” box from the “Search visibility” section at the bottom of the page.
  • If you don’t want people to see all parts of your personal profile, click the “Edit visibility on profile” link under the “Google Profiles” section of the page. Then, on the opening page, click each item in your profile to tailor its visibility.
  • On your “Profile and Privacy link, uncheck the box for “Show People In” if you don’t want others to see who your friends are.
  • Similarly, you can hide visibility for who has added you to their circles by unchecking the box that says “Show people who have added you to circles” at the bottom of the “Edit Network Visibility” pop-up box.
  • Finally, when posting on your homepage, look at the box underneath the text box you are typing into to see who will have visibility of your post. You can add or remove an individual’s or circle’s ability to see your upload.

In my next blog, I’ll conclude this series with an introduction to Twitter and LinkedIn privacy options.


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