Enjoy Facebook Safely and Securely

This week, some Facebook users may have received a note in their newsfeeds advising them that they, or a Facebook friend, logged into a now-banned personality quiz app. The notice will explain how the app misused their information by sharing it with the UK data-mining firm Cambridge Analytica. The information shared could include their public profile, page likes, birthday and current city. Approximately 87 million Facebook users were affected. Click here for summary of this story and additional advice for checking to see if you were affected.

In response to members’ questions about Facebook and privacy, the Senior Planet Exploration Center recently hosted some Facebook representatives for an informal talk. The session ended with a Facebook Privacy Checkup walkthrough and one-on-one coaching on privacy settings with the members’ tablets and smartphones.

“It was excellent,” says Member Maureen C, “I was reassured that Facebook has it under control and I learned to check my privacy settings…  It’s great that Senior Planet was able to arrange this … in fact, I’m taking a course here later today.” “Member Marie M. said, “I got all my questions answered … my philosophy is there’s no such thing as ‘too much info!”’

Senior Planet advises members to review their privacy settings. Here are some tips:

  • Check your Privacy Settings and review how your personal information can be viewed.
  • From a web browser, click on the “Question Mark ” or “Help” symbol to reveal Privacy Shortcuts and to conduct a Privacy Checkup. In the Checkup, you can review your Apps and delete the ones you don’t recognize or don’t use. Some App providers need to be contacted directly to be removed. (During his Senate testimony, Facebook CEO Marc Zuckerberg announced that the social network will investigate every app on the platform with many, many users to make sure data isn’t misused going forward.)
  • Don’t hesitate to report ‘bad actors” on your Facebook page, such as spam by clicking on the “Question Mark” icon and scrolling down to “Report a problem.”
  • Rethink your password strategy; think in terms of a “passphrase” (a sequence of words or other text that have meaning only to you). For information on how to make secure passwords, check out this Senior Planet article.

Note: You only need to review and update your settings on one device. In other words, if you change your settings on your phone, you don’t have to do it again on your home computer or tablet.

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