Tag Archives: privacy

Work

How to permanently delete your Facebook account

Recent revelations about the way Facebook data has been used in the past, might make you think again about your happy, innocent use of the social media giant. The increasing understanding that we don’t quite get everything that happens to our personal data means that many are feeling increasingly uneasy about it.

At the very least: Don’t do quizzes on Facebook.

But if you want to get off Facebook, what do you do? Because it’s not exactly intuitive…

How to deactivate your Facebook account:

Doing it this way, means you can return to Facebook when you want, if you can’t cure your addiction to it.

So take the following steps:

  1. Click the downward arrow at the top right of any Facebook page
  2. Select “Settings”
  3. Click “Security” in the left column
  4. Choose “Deactivate your account”, then follow the steps to confirm

If you deactivate your account your profile won’t be visible to other people on Facebook and you’ll be hidden from Facebook search, but some information, such as messages you sent to friends, may still be visible to others.

You can reactivate your account at any time by logging in with your email and password. Your profile will be restored in its entirety.

How to permanently delete your account

If you really want to go, you can request to have your account permanently deleted. But once this has happened, it won’t be possible to reactivate your account or retrieve anything you’ve shared on your profile.

So before you take this step, you may want to download a copy of your information from Facebook:

  1. Click the downward arrow at the top right of any Facebook page
  2. Select “Settings”
  3. Click on the link at the bottom of the main menu that says “Download a copy of your Facebook data”.

Then you need to go to https://www.facebook.com/help/delete_account, click on “Delete my account”, then follow the steps to confirm.

It can take up to 90 days for Facebook to delete all of the things you’ve posted, like your photos, status updates or other data stored in backup systems, but while this is happening, it is inaccessible to other people using the social network.

And remember that some of the things you do on Facebook aren’t stored in your personal account. A message to a friend, for example, will remain even after you delete your account, so you will need to contact the recipients of you want that removed too.

 

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Education Work

Why you shouldn’t do those Facebook quizzes – and how to disconnect from them

If you’ve been on Facebook recently, you may have see the online quiz that creates a ‘word cloud’ from all the words you use most regularly on the platform. It has gone viral – and its a classic example of why you shouldn’t hop on those ‘harmless’ quizzes that your friends seem to have so much time to do.

Time To Ask Yourself A Simple Question

So whether you’re asked ‘what is your signature pop song’, ‘what historical figure you are’ or ‘what literary figure you most resemble’, just ask yourself why the quiz-makers have bothered.

After all, it’s not up to them to decide how you pass your time. Those tacky adverts down the side aren’t going to pay their bills.

The UK-based VPN comparison site (yes, there are such things) Comparitech looked into the information the word cloud quiz ‘needed and discovered it asks for your name, birthdate, hometown, education details, all your Likes, photos, browser, language, your IP address and even your friends list if you link it with Facebook.

That’s quite a lot to ask when creating something from your public utterances.

Many quizzes and games ask for similar amounts of seemingly superfluous information. They may also ask you to authorize the connection to the social network, to make sure you share your results in the hope that the quiz goes viral. If you don’t allow the sharing, the chances are that the quiz doesn’t function.

It’s About Control

The big issue with all this is that once you’ve handed your data over, you can’t control what is done with it, even if you never use the quiz again.

These games are simply data harvesters and, buried deep in the privacy policy you ‘sign’ when you connect, is often the permission to continue to use your data even after you disconnect from whatever tempted you in the first place. And that often means sharing your data with third parties – clicking that permission button has already allowed that.

The only safe way to deal with such things is to never use them in the first place, but you can alter what the quiz/game app can access.

How To Get Rid Of Facebook Apps

To get rid of older apps you already authorized, simply click the lock icon on the top right corner of your Facebook page and go to “See More Settings.” You can see the “Logged in with Facebook” list under the Apps section — click “x” to remove any application that you don’t trust or recognize.

There’s an element of watching a sprinting horse as you close the stable door about that approach. Abstention is your best policy – because even if you don’t worry too much about your own privacy, by sharing the app and your data, you could be making your friends more vulnerable too.

Want to stay connected to the author? Follow Jimmy on Twitter

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Work

Do you really have the right to be forgotten online?

Today is ‘Safer Internet Day‘ and that means it’s a good time to figure out how you can stay a bit more secure online. But online security is about a lot more than having a long and difficult password.

In fact, there’s a lot more to being safe online than anything you’ll find in today’s Google Doodle that offers you the ability to get a 2-minute online safety tune-up courtesy of the almighty Google.

One of the biggest ways to truly stay safe online for a long time is by becoming a proper digital citizen. The term ‘digital citizenship’ essentially means acting right, treating others how you would wish to be treated (with respect, hopefully), and thinking twice before doing most things like posting photos of yourself.

Which brings us to the ‘right to be forgotten,’ a phrase that is currently being hotly debated around the world as Europe and online companies like Google endeavor to figure out if web users like you and me actually have the right to be forgotten online.

See Also: Staying safe online: Google’s best tips and tricks

Let’s say we do something when we’re young and share a video of it on YouTube. We then apply for a job 10 years later. The hiring manager looks you up, sees that video, and doesn’t hire you. Wouldn’t it be great to simply tell Google that you want ALL these kinds of materials to be forgotten by the search index? Wouldn’t that have helped you get that job? Probably.

But there’s more to it than just covering up past indiscretions. In fact, this video is a must-watch today of all days – but really is worth seeing for anyone looking to learn more about how they can stay safer online now and into the distant future.

After all, the Internet never forgets. Ever.

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