YOU have been introduced to Facebook and think it’s a great way to keep in touch with family and friends near and far.
But wait, there are several things you should know about Facebook, mostly about security and how to protect yourself, your account and your family.
Do not reveal personal information
This includes your home address, telephone number, email address, where you work, where your grandchildren go to school, where they live, which bank you use ….
Revealing such information is an easy way to get stalked, robbed or kidnapped.
Do not reveal where you are when you’re there
This means, don’t say things like “I’m now going to such-and-such shop in Jalan so-and-so”. Or worse, “I’ll be in Kota Kinabalu for two weeks. My house will be vacant for the duration.”
This is like sending an invitation to robbers.
Do not accept friend invitations from people you don’t know
Occasionally you will receive invitations to be friends with people you don’t know. You may discover that you and that person have mutual friends. But, that doesn’t mean that it’s safe to befriend him or her.
A check with your friends might reveal who this person is and whether they are okay to be friends with on Facebook. However, don’t be surprised to find out your friends also don’t know this person. It happens.
If nobody knows this person in the offline world, perhaps it’s better and safer not to befriend him or her on Facebook.
How to secure your FB account
Okay, now let’s go into how to configure your settings from within Facebook so that your account can only be viewed by yourself, or friends.
Click on settings
If you’re using a PC to log in, the Settings link is at the top far right. Click on the downward arrow. You will see Settings in the dropdown menu. Click on it.
In the menu on the left, you will see Privacy. Click on that.
Who can see my stuff?
Who can see your future posts? – Change this to Friends. Do not make it Public.
Who can contact me?
Who can send you friend requests? – Change this to Friends of Friends, unless you really want any random person to send you Friend invites.
Who can look me up?
Who can look you up using the email address you provided? – Change this to Friends or Friends of Friends. Recommended: Friends.
Who can look you up using the phone number you provided? – Change this to Friends or Friends of Friends. Recommended: Friends.
Do you want other search engines to link to your timeline? Change this to No. This way Google, Yahoo!, Bing and other search engines will not list your FB page when anyone searches your name.
Now click on Timeline and Tagging on the left menu, just below Privacy.
Timeline and Tagging Settings
Who can add things to my timeline?
Who can post on your timeline? – Change this to Friends or Only Me (depending on your preference). Recommended: Friends.
Who can see things on my timeline?
Who can see posts you’ve been tagged in on your timeline? – Change this to Friends or Friends of Friends, or Only Me (depending on your preference). Recommended: Friends.
Who can see what others post on your timeline? – Change this to Only Me or Friends or Friends of Friends (depending on your preference). Recommended: Only Me.
How can I manage tags people add and tagging suggestions?
When you’re tagged in a post, who do you want to add to the audience if they aren’t already in it? – Change to Friends or Only Me. Recommended: Friends.
Who sees tag suggestions when photos that look like you are uploaded? – Change to No One.
Click on Blocking on the left menu.
There are various options here for blocking users, invites, app invites, event invites, apps and pages you may find annoying. Use them as a last resort.
Each post on your Facebook account can also be configured individually – whether you want it to be seen only by you, by friends, or by friends of friends, or the public.
If you have configured accordingly as suggested above, you don’t have to keep configuring each post.
If you find that you’re posting statements or photos on your Facebook page and nobody can see them, that means your security settings are too high.
Adjust them accordingly.
Be wise, not anti-social. After all, you don’t want strangers to see your posts and photos, but you want your family members and friends to.