Quick Guide: Setting Your Facebook Privacy Options

With more and more consumers experiencing identity theft because of hackers and sloppy security on commercial websites, Internet users need to also take care to shore up their privacy on social networking sites, especially the biggest fish in the online pond – Facebook. Here’s some things you can do to protect your Facebook privacy.

Look up at the top right of your Facebook Page. Way up there at the top.  Look closely. Facebook could sure make that button easier.  It looks like a lock and three bars. See the photo at the right.privacy

If you click that little lock , the first thing you;ll see is something called “Privacy Checkup.”

Now it gets easier.

You can choose from several options and the first is your posts. Do you want the public to see them? Just friends, only family? Make a choice. Just remember, public means public – everyone on or off Facebook that looks you up.

Click “Next Step” and it lets you adjust settings on the apps that use Facebook. You have the same options about who sees the apps you use and any posts the app makes for you. Go through them one by one. You can delete them by clicking the x.

Click “Next Step” once more and you come to perhaps the most important part – your profile. Keep those details as private as you can, especially your phone number. Click “Finish Up” and you’re done.

One last point: Facebook seems to change their privacy options a lot. So once you select your privacy levels, be sure to check it periodically to make sure you’re still protected the way you want.

Mike is a veteran journalist whose video "PC Mike" reports have been distributed weekly to all 215 NBC-TV stations since 1994, making him one of the most experienced tech reporters in the country. His tech stories and videos have appeared on MSNBC, CNBC, the Today Show, The New York Times, USA Today and in numerous national newspapers and magazines. In addition to the PC Mike tech blog, he also publishes the RV Travel Blog in which he travels North America in an RV reporting about interesting people and places.