Facebook is an Internet site that facilitates the interaction between friends, family, co-workers, etc. through the use of online profiles. Individuals with user accounts on Facebook can search for others who have user accounts. This can be both convenient for friends and associates who are looking to keep in touch with one another and inconvenient and even a threat to personal security and privacy if you are being searched for by individuals that you do not trust. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the security and privacy settings that you can use to protect yourself while you have a profile on their site.
One such piece of privacy protection is called a “limited profile.” A limited profile provides the user of the account with flexibility when it comes to who is allowed to see what portions of your profile. You can establish a limited profile for selected people and these individuals will never be informed that they are only viewing a selection of the features that are available on your profile.
How to use limited profiles on Facebook
1. From the “Privacy: page on your Facebook personal account, follow the “Limited Profile Settings” link by clicking on that option.
2. This will then take you to a page where you can decide what profile information you wish to include in your Limited Profile. If you do not finish this step the system will be left in the default position meaning that all information will be included on your limited profile.
3. You will be given a series of boxes to check and uncheck. In doing this you will be able to get a good idea for what your limited profile will look like when you are done.
4. After finishing the process of checking boxes and tailoring your limited profile, you can then search through the Facebook system in order to compile your list of people who will be granted the limited view of your profile.
5. To search for the individuals who will have limited access to your profile, use the search tool at the bottom of the Privacy page under “Limited Profile.”
6. Search for the individuals who you want to include on your limited profile list (remember that only other Facebook users can be included on your limited profile list).
7. Once the search results bring up the person that you are looking for click on the “Limit Profile Access” box that will be just to the right of their name.
It is always a good idea to be better safe than sorry when it comes to deciding on what information you feel comfortable sharing with others. Realize that there are loop-holes to nearly any system and that even though you may set up your security setting and go through all the proper steps to set up limited profiles, the possibility still exists for someone to gain access to any information that you may have posted to your profile. This is why you should never include any banking or personal contact information on your profile. If using Facebook for business purposes, make sure that your contact information consists of addresses and phone numbers that are generic for your company and use extreme caution when distributing your direct line to those who you have not yet developed a personal relationship with. Hackers and identity thieves are skilled at what they do and it is your responsibility to build up your defenses against them. Make sure that you look into other security and privacy settings that you should be adjusting for your Facebook account. Exploring all of the options on the “Privacy” page is a good place to start.