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Social media

10-second Facebook security setting you need to change right now

Facebook has some questionable approaches to privacy and it is catching up to the social network. Former employee Frances Haugen recently revealed that the company knowingly allows the spread of false information, hatred and discrimination on its platform. No name change can hide the company’s wrongdoings.

Perhaps you’ve had enough of Facebook and want to get away from it. You could migrate to another platform or leave social media entirely. But what about all the photos, memories and friends you’ve made on Facebook? Don’t worry. You can take it all with you to some extent. Tap or click here for tips on deleting your Facebook account.

When social media began, most people weren’t thinking their posts could come back to haunt them later on. You also need to worry about the rising number of scams that target social networks and their users. Limiting your digital footprint can help and one way to do this is to make your past posts less visible.

Here’s the backstory

You may have been with Facebook from the beginning or you joined a couple of years ago. You were younger and perhaps more carefree about what you posted and shared. There’s probably some old stuff you forgot about that would not be helpful if it saw the light of day. It could be as innocent as sharing a post from a celebrity who has fallen out of public favor.

Facebook launched in 2004, about a year after Myspace. Social media wasn’t exactly new, but these two companies certainly helped spread it globally and opened the door for other platforms. While Myspace is past its prime, Facebook is the largest social network in the world, boasting nearly 3 billion monthly active users according to statista.com.

With numbers like those, the social network is prime for picking when it comes to scams and data breaches. Even if you’re careful with what you share, your past can catch up with you and make you an easy target for crooks.

Anyone on the internet who has access to your profile can see your old posts. It could be public posts or those visible to friends of friends. While you can change the privacy for some individual posts, this wasn’t always the case. And who wants to go back and do so with hundreds or even thousands of their old posts? There’s a way to take care of this in a few simple steps.

Related: Facebook Messenger: 5 things you didn’t know you could do

Take back (some of) your privacy

There’s an important privacy setting you should check out. This setting lets you limit who can see your past Facebook posts all in one shot. It’s an easy task that will make you less vulnerable to bad actors.

Limit the audience for old posts on Facebook desktop

  • Open Facebook on your desktop and click the Account icon, a downward facing arrow.
  • Go Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  • Click Privacy in the left column.
  • Tap Limit the audience for posts you’ve shared with friends of friends or Public?
  • Click Limit Past Posts > Limit Past Posts to confirm.

Limit the audience for old posts on Facebook mobile

  • Open Facebook on your smartphone and tap the Menu hamburger icon.
  • Open the Settings & Privacy dropdown menu and tap Settings.
  • Scroll down and tap Posts under Audience and Visibility.
  • Tap Limit who can see past posts, then tap Limit Past Posts > Limit Past Posts to confirm.

Keep reading

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