Protect Your Privacy on Facebook – Change these 5 Settings

The Cambridge Analytica scandal revealed that Meta shared user data with advertisers and third parties. Some users even deleted their Facebook profiles in the process. While deleting your Facebook profile makes little or no sense, there are a few settings that you can change to protect your privacy on Facebook.

Changing these settings also reduces the data you are giving to Facebook. So, today we are going to tell you about some Facebook settings you should change right now to make sure that the company does not violate your privacy.

First things first, there are a couple of things you should check regularly. This includes the apps and services that have access to your Facebook data and limiting the way Facebook shares your data with websites and apps.

SEE ALSO: How to Protect Your Privacy Online while using Google Chrome?

5 Facebook Settings that Might Invade or Protect Your Privacy

So, if you are concerned about your privacy on Facebook, we recommend you go through the following checklist. This is a basic privacy checklist that makes sure Facebook doesn’t violate your privacy.

1. Check Apps and Websites Connected to your Facebook Account

You’ll be surprised to see the sheer number of apps and services you have connected to your Facebook account over time. It’s important to clear this up to make sure that your data is safe.

In your Facebook account head over to Settings and then click on Apps and Websites. Here you can see the apps and services connected to your Facebook account.

This is one of the Facebook settings that you should check regularly to protect your privacy. So, go through the list and remove the ones you don’t use anymore.

Click Remove Next To App Or Website To Remove Its Facebook Access - change Facebook settings to protect your privacy
Remove Apps or Website access from Facebook

When you remove an app you will be shown a pop-up that says that the app may retain data that it has already collected. That sucks but at least it won’t be able to collect more data as you keep using Facebook over time.

Honestly, though this is very important because a large part of how Cambridge Analytica collected data was in the form of apps and services disguised as personality quizzes and more.

2. Turn Off Apps and Website Access to Protect your Privacy

As mentioned above, third-party apps and websites get a lot of data from your Facebook profile. So, if you are not sure about which apps you might give permissions to in the future unwillingly, it’s a better idea to disable this access permanently.

You can do that from the Facebook website or Facebook app on your phone. In the Facebook app on your phone, go to the following setting –

Menu > Settings and Privacy > Settings > Apps and Websites

Here, tap on the Turn Off button in “Apps, websites and games” under Preferences.

Turn Off Apps Websites And Games Access On Facebook
Turn Off Apps, Websites, and Games access on Facebook

From now onwards, no app or website will be able to request data from your Facebook profile. But remember, you also won’t be able to log in to websites using your Facebook account.

Let’s see other Facebook settings that you should change to protect your privacy.

SEE ALSO: How to Remove Ads and Bloatware in MIUI?

3. Manage Facebook and Messenger App’s Permissions

Facebook also does this tricky thing where it asks you for a butt load of permissions when you install its apps on your mobile, probably something that most people don’t pay attention to. Fortunately, this is also something you can fix, at least for the future.

In the Facebook app make sure you don’t give Contacts, Microphone, SMS, and Telephone permissions to the app. If you have already given these permissions, you can head over to App information and revoke them.

The app may need Storage permissions if you upload things from your phone and Camera permissions if you use Facebook stories or use the camera within the app to upload pictures or something.

If you don’t use these (Uploading pictures and Taking pictures using the camera in the Facebook app), change these settings as well to protect your privacy.

Manage Facebook App's permissions to protect your Privacy
Manage Facebook App’s permissions to protect your Privacy

Similarly, in the Messenger app when you’re installing it, don’t turn on text anyone on your phone. Besides that, don’t add your phone number to the messenger, and don’t turn on send and receive SMS in Messenger.

Messenger settings initial steps skip adding your number - change settings to protect your privacy
Messenger settings steps

If you’ve already installed Messenger, you can simply uninstall the app and reinstall it to opt out of these features.

These permissions are why a lot of people are noticing that Facebook has their call histories, message histories, and more all saved on its servers.

These permissions are how Facebook gets that data and it is a risk to your privacy. So, just don’t give it those permissions at all.

4. Change Facebook Ads Settings to Protect Your Privacy

Facebook survives on ads and it uses your data to target ads at you. Well, that is not something you can exactly stop but you can limit it to an extent which is better than not limiting it at all.

In our opinion, in Facebook ad preferences, you can control the kind of data advertisers can target you with. You can also remove yourself from categories you don’t want to be targeted with.

For example, you can remove your birthday month if you don’t want to get shopping deals around that time and spend all your money buying stuff.

Change 5 Facebook Settings Customize Interest Categories
Customize Interest Categories

Another annoying thing is when your friends see a sponsored page with the line You (Your Name) like this. Well, we don’t like that and fortunately, it is yet another thing you can opt out of.

In Facebook ad references, you can simply set Ads with your social actions to Only Me and you are all set.

Set Ads With Your Social Interaction To You Only To Protect Your Privacy
Set Ads with your Social Interaction to Only Me

While you’re in your Facebook Ad preferences Settings, let’s change a few other settings to protect your privacy.

For instance, turn off ads based on your use of websites and apps which Facebook serves by basically stalking you around the internet.

Disable Personalized Ads In Facebook
Disable personalized ads on Facebook

Also, turn off ads on apps and websites outside the Facebook companies to prevent apps that use Facebook scan tools from using your data to target ads at you.

Disable Ads Off Of Facebook By The Advertisers
Disable ads outside of Facebook

SEE ALSO: How to Disable Popups and Spam Notifications on Android?

5. A Few More Things to Try

There are some other things you can do to ensure that you share the least amount of data with Facebook about your activities on the internet. Fortunately, they are very simple to do as well.

A) Do Not Login with Facebook Account on Third-Party Sites

Firstly DON’T LOGIN WITH YOUR FACEBOOK ACCOUNT ON THIRD-PARTY WEBSITES. If you log in on a third-party website, instant games, or app with Facebook, make sure you check the data it is taking.

Do Not Login With Facebook On Third Party Websites - protect your privacy
Do not log in with Facebook on third-party websites

B) Delete Contacts Uploaded to Facebook

You can also delete your uploaded contacts from Facebook. If you’ve ever used Messenger and allowed it access to your contacts, you will find your entire contact list on Facebook.

You can click this link and see all of your uploaded contacts. Fortunately, Facebook lets you delete this as well in just two clicks, click on Delete All, Confirm it and you’re done.

Delete all uploaded Contacts from Facebook to protect your privacy
Delete all uploaded Contacts from Facebook

C) Download your Facebook Data

The point is, that Facebook has a lot of personal data. It’s the history of your life ever since you joined the social media platform.

But don’t take our word for it; you can even download a copy of your Facebook data from your Account Settings. But be warned, it may scare you. It scared us as well.

Besides, just downloading your Facebook data, you can also transfer your Photos and Videos from Facebook to Google Photos.

Download Your Facebook Data From Account Information Page
Download your Facebook data

Protect Your Privacy By Changing 5 Facebook Settings

Anyway, if you’ve been concerned with the kind of data you share with Facebook and how the company is using that data, following the steps shown above should ensure that you share a lot less data with the company. So, go ahead and change the settings on your Facebook account right now to protect your privacy.

We also suggest you share this with your friends because this thing is really important. Be safe on social media and protect your data. If you are considering deleting your Facebook profile, make sure to check this helpful article.

Editorial Staff

Hi there, we are the editorial staff at WINDOSPC (former HELLPC). We are a team of funny and technical people. Feel free to get in touch with us via Contact-Us page.

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