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How to Maintain Your Privacy and Stay Safe on Facebook

Facebook has 2.2 billion monthly active users but with a website that relies so heavily on your personal data - how do you remain secure?

For many of us, Facebook is one of our daily rituals. You might check the website in the morning to see if there are any new notifications from friends and browse your feed at night while falling asleep. However, like any social network, Facebook is a website that feeds on your personal data to keep it afloat. While sharing isn’t necessarily harmful, it’s essential to know exactly what bits of your life is seeping onto the web for all to see.

Read More: Deactivating vs. Deleting Your Facebook Account

To help keep you safe and secure while connecting with friends and family across the world, check out these smart social media tips.

Begin Here… A Simple Privacy Checkup
Facebook has a convenient feature built into their website known as ‘Privacy Checkup’; it can be accessed by clicking on the question mark bubble in the upper right-hand corner of the screen – adjacent to the ‘logout’ drop-down menu. In 3 easy steps, you can check who sees your posts, what external apps have access to your data, and what personal information shows up on your profile.

Lock Down Your Timeline and Tagging
A big tip: consider controlling the type of content that’s posted on your timeline, along with what posts you’re tagged in. To access these settings, select the drop-down arrow in the upper right-hand corner of the Facebook site, select the ‘Settings’ option, then select the ‘Timeline and Tagging’ option. Here you can finetune who are allowed to post content on your wall and if you prefer to be tagged in posts or not.

Reconsider That Selfie
A general rule to consider, despite your Facebook privacy settings, is to treat everything you post as though anyone could view it. Remember, sharing something with your friends doesn’t mean they can’t take that info and redistribute it elsewhere.

Two-Factor Authentication is Painless
An easy way to make your Facebook account more secure is to set up two-factor authentication. This option can be found under Facebook Settings and then ‘Security and Login.’ Enabling this option means that anyone attempting to log in to your account (including yourself), will be prompted to enter not only a password but also a one time code that’s sent via SMS text message or generated from the Facebook mobile application. Even if a potential intruder has your passcode, they won’t be able to gain access without your specific, personal device containing the one-time passcode.

Clamp Down on Security Overall
Besides accessing your account from the web, another possible breach is if someone gains physical access to your phone. If you want to take your security even further, you can add a secondary passcode to your social apps by using dfndr security, which has a social guardian feature. Choose which social apps you wish to protect, create a complicated passcode, and you’ll be set. Should your phone land in the wrong hands, your social media connections will be inaccessible.

Facebook is one of the greatest tech inventions to grace society, and with these tips, you’ll have the freedom to use its benefits to the fullest.