8 essential facebook photo privacy tips


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Facebook photo pageIf a picture’s worth a thousand words, then Facebook is an encyclopedia about all of us. You never know when a Facebook photo of you will come back to haunt you in a job search, a first date, a college application, or just embarrass you. Lock down your photos and limit your risks with these 8 tips.

To start, log into Facebook, click on the gear icon in the upper-right of the screen, and click on “Privacy Settings.” On the privacy settings page, click “Timeline and Tagging” on the left. You’ll need to change several settings here, so let’s start from the top:

1. “Who can post on your timeline?” (Lets you control who can post things on your Facebook page so you don’t have strangers posting spam or other unwanted stuff.) Edit and change to “friends,” “only me,” or make a custom list of people you trust.

2. “Review posts friends tag you in before they appear on your timeline?” (Lets you click to approve or disprove any mentions of you before they show up on your timeline, which is great protection.) Click “edit” and turn the feature on.

3. “Who can see posts you’ve been tagged in on your timeline?” (Further limits the audience that can see posts where you’re tagged.) Click “edit” and change to “friends” or make a custom list of people.

4. “Who can see what others post on your timeline?” (Limits who can see what other people post on your timeline.) Click “edit” and change to “friends” or make a custom list of people.

5. “Review tags people add to your own posts before the tags appear on Facebook?” (Lets you check over and approve or disprove other people’s posts where they mention you.) Click “edit” and turn the feature on.

6. “When you’re tagged in a post, who do you want to add to the audience if they aren’t already in it?” (Keeps people from sharing posts where you’re tagged way beyond the original people who could see it.) Click “edit” and change to “only me.”

7. “Who sees tag suggestions when photos that look like you are uploaded?” (This is Facebook’s facial recognition. Turn it off unless you want Facebook suggesting that it’s your face in uploaded photos.) Click “edit” and change to “no one.”

8. Disable geotagging in your mobile phone’s photos. Many smartphones will automatically include the longitude and latitude where a photo was taken in that picture’s metadata, making it easy to pinpoint your location. If you then upload these pictures to Facebook, they preserve that location data when anyone downloads them.

To disable geotagging on an iPhone, go to Settings>Privacy>Location Services>Camera>Off.

On an Android, open the Camera app, then hit the gear icon to open settings, scroll down to GPS tag, and make sure it’s turned off.

Follow these tips and you’ll be in much better control over your Facebook photo privacy!

5 Replies to “8 essential facebook photo privacy tips”

  1. Okie says:


  2. If you are interested in the number of photos that all your friends share and especially in how many photos they tag people or locations, I suggest you using the app Facebook Photo Privacy Statistics. It has been build by privacy researchers to get such numbers, which you cannot get in any other way. The calculated numbers give you insights into your current photo privacy influenced by your Facebook friends. The statistics of course respect your privacy as you can see in its privacy terms.

  3. Anonymous says:

    In regards to the geotagging: With the new iOS update, the only options under location services, camera are Facebook. If the Facebook switch is turned off, uploading and downloading photos through Facebook is disabled. I don’t see any way to disable geotagging like you have suggested.

  4. Sherish says:

    Great sharing.Thanks so much

  5. mikemallown says:

    In regard to your discussion, I would recommend an android phone application that is quite useful for the purpose. I use an app named “GPS Privacy” that automatically deletes the GPS location tags if the photo is taken in a privacy area – like around your home, school, work, etc. This way you don’t have to remember whether you have the GPS tags on or off. Simply define your privacy areas, and your pictures won’t have GPS coordinates when made in these zones
    Hope this would be helpful for you as well!

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