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Home / Tips and Tricks / 6 Facebook security bugs that need to be fixed on data protection day

6 Facebook security bugs that need to be fixed on data protection day



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Graphic from Pixabay / Illustration by Angela Lang / CNET

Tuesday is Privacy Day an occasion to remind you to search your online accounts for a few minutes to ensure that your information or data remains private. Facebook is of course one of the biggest hamsters of our personal data.

Facebook knows a lot about you and this makes your account a primary target for potential bad guys. As we learned from Facebook's Cambridge Analytica scandal a strong password doesn't always prevent bad actors from getting all the information we like to share with Facebook. Instead, the researchers used an app to collect data about their users and friends. According to a recently published report, Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg knew about some of these privacy issues, which is another black eye for the company.

Backing up your Facebook account does not take much time and is best done from a computer rather than your phone, as some of the settings can contain a lot of information. Even if you've recently spent securing your account, you should occasionally visit the Facebook settings page and take a look at things again. Probably new settings have been added and older settings have been moved.

Read on to learn how to set a strong password, how others can search for you, and how to prevent Facebook from saving your location history.

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Strong passwords and 2FA are incredibly important.


Screenshot from Jason Cipriani / CNET

Use a strong password and two-factor authentication.

First, you should create a secure password for your Facebook account and enable two-factor authentication. However, this seems obvious. The importance cannot be emphasized enough. You should also update your password from time to time and make sure that you are not using the same for important accounts as your banking app. Use a password manager to create your unique passwords and especially remember them ( These are our top tips for the best password manager ). Go to the Security page and change your password.

If you have a new password, enable two-factor authentication. With 2FA enabled, you will need to enter your secure password and a randomly generated code each time you log in to your account. (You should really use 2FA for every account and service that supports it.)

Most password managers can also store your two-factor authentication codes. However, you can always use Google Authenticator to save your codes and grant access to them.

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Take the time to review each setting and adjust it to your liking.


Screenshot from Jason Cipriani / CNET

Review privacy settings and tools

Facebook has its own privacy section for your account. In this section you can, for example, set the default privacy setting for future posts, control who can send you friend requests, and control what information users can use to search for your account.

Go through the privacy settings and tools page and adjust each setting to your liking. I suggest putting your future posts on "friends" and restricting phone and email address search options to "friends" or "just me" to ensure that everyone with only a portion of your personal information is your account Can be found.

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There is no telling what kind of personal information you shared on Facebook a few years ago. Limit previous posts to prevent this information from being public.


Screenshot from Jason Cipriani / CNET

Limit public use of previous posts.

The way we use social networks has changed significantly, especially as we are increasingly aware of how Facebook and Facebook users can use our personal information.

Fortunately, you can prevent your previous posts from showing up if someone trips over your profile.

Go to the Privacy section and search for Limit the target audience for old posts in your timeline Click Limit recent posts and then click the button with the same Title. Everything you've ever shared publicly or with friends of friends is changed to be shared only with friends. This limits who can see it.

You cannot choose which posts to change with this setting. If you want to do this, you have to go through your timeline manually and make these changes one at a time.

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You may be surprised at how many devices can access your Facebook account.


Screenshot from Jason Cipriani / CNET

Test devices with access to your account

Over the years we have all logged into our Facebook accounts on different phones, computers, tablets and various other devices. Facebook keeps a log of the devices that have access to your account and makes it easier to revoke access to an unauthorized device or a device that you forgot to log out of.

View a list of all of these devices in the Where You Are Registered section of the Security and Registration page. If you have multiple devices, click Show more to display the entire list. To remove a device from the list, click on the three-dot symbol to the right of the device name and then on Logout . You will be asked if you want to remove all posts from this device from your account. A handy feature if someone has access to your account and published it without your permission.

Alternatively, you can log out of any device associated with your account by clicking Show More > Log Out of All Sessions in the list below. I noticed that some devices from 2012 still had access to my account when I wrote this article – yeah. I logged out of all devices to start with a clean sheet. The few seconds I spend reporting back every time I use a device that has been revoked is worth knowing.

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screenshot by Jason Cipriani / CNET

Don't forget to search apps with access.

We also gave countless apps access to our Facebook account. Over time, some apps are abandoned by developers and ultimately pose a security risk. If someone has access to the app's user database, they can theoretically access some features of your Facebook account.

Visit the Apps and websites page to view the active apps that have access to your account. Check the box next to the apps you want to remove, and then click the Remove button.

You can also remove any apps that have expired by clicking the Expired tab at the top of the page.

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Disable tracking of Facebook location history in the Android app.


Screenshots from Jason Cipriani / CNET

Disable location history on your phone

Facebook uses access to location data from your phone to create a map of your location history. You can delete your location history here or, if you do not want to save your location history on Facebook, deactivate the location history.

Open the Facebook app on an Android phone and tap the three-line icon. Under Settings & data protection select the option Links to data protection followed by Manage your location settings on the data protection map. Next, select Location History and make sure the switch is off.

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Disable tracking of Facebook location history in the iPhone app.


Screenshots from Jason Cipriani / CNET

The process is similar on an iPhone ($ 900 on Amazon) . Open the Facebook app and tap on the three-line icon, then on Settings & data protection and select Data protection links followed by Manage your location settings the data protection card. Here you will find the switch to deactivate the location history.

Even after you've secured your account, you want to make sure that all of your data is secure or if you'd rather just be with Facebook, you can delete your account .

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Originally published last year. Updated with new information.


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