The Protect IU Blog
The Facebook Smart Card (and Your Birthday)
We received a set of "Social Media Smart Cards" from a government agency recently and they gave permission for us to share these with our community. These Smart Cards give hints and illustrate how to set privacy and other settings to ensure that your information is visible only to the people of your choosing.
First I tried out the Facebook Smart Card (attached).
I discovered that it is a little out of date, but when it comes to Facebook, anything you print will be out of date the moment you print it, given how often Facebook makes changes! :) But it was close enough for me to follow along and check and adjust my current settings.
For example, I had trouble finding the profile menu they illustrate, but I did eventually locate it under "About" - just under my Timeline photo. And a couple of settings here and there were worded slightly differently, or located in a different menu.
I totally disagree with one example on this Smart Card - it suggests that you "Show Birthday." I do NOT recommend this, as your real, full birthdate is a piece of data still often used to verify your identity for various important transactions. Not only do I recommend that you NOT show your birthday to anyone, but I also suggest you use a fake birthday for this and any site that requires it, when it isn't needed. Now, I know some of you are saying "But then my friends won't be able to Facebook me birthday greetings!!" Actually, they still can! Your REAL friends will KNOW your real birthday. Plus, your Facebook friends who don't know you as well will wish you birthday greetings on another random day, and you will then enjoy birthday attentions twice per year instead of once! What's not to like about that? (Some alternate suggestions: use the right day, but wrong year; or, use your "half birthday" - your birthdate six months later, or halfway through the year...)
They don't mention it on this Smart Card, but, I would also suggest that you make your real email address your "primary facebook email address."
Finally, the Smart Card explains how to deactivate and delete your Facebook account, should you wish to, but it is important to note that while these actions will remove YOUR account and information, others will still have the information they copied from you, so copies of your Facebook information may still exist in other online locations.
Always remember: you should expect that anything you post online to a social media site could possibly stay online virtually forever.
Happy Facebook Settings Adjusting!!
Merri Beth Lavagnino is IU's Chief Risk Officer