Two new social media privacy issues came up this week, one at Facebook and one at LinkedIn. Interestingly, both just showed up without any fanfare. No big announcements, no blog posts . . . nothing. When will they learn?
We’re pretty sure that if the platforms simply explained what how they were changing their privacy settings and why, the users might just shrug and go on.
Even better, if they explained the potential benefits to users and allowed them to opt-in voluntarily (rather than doing it for them), people might even welcome the changes.
But discovering that
There are new privacy settings that you haven’t heard of;
You’ve been opted into them without your knowledge; and
Plenty of people now have access to your personal information–and hey, your photo may even turn up in an advertisement
Well, let’s just call that an epic fail on behalf of two of the most dominant social media networks.
Fortunately, we’re here to help. Here’s how to update your LinkedIn and Facebook privacy settings to deal with the new issues:
How to update LinkedIn privacy settings
The social media outlet for business professionals quietly added a “social sharing in advertising” setting and automatically opted-in all users. This means that your name and face can be used in third-party advertising. Brand Impact has provided step-by-step instructions for changing that setting.
While you’re updating your profile, we also recommend that you review your email settings just to ensure that you’re not going to get any unwanted messages clogging up your inbox. Note that under email preferences, you have to choose separately the types of messages, the frequency of emails and the frequency of digest emails.
How to update Facebook phone number privacy
Unbeknownst to pretty much anyone in the general public, Facebook began to display phone numbers (mostly mobile numbers) that users had provided in a Facebook phonebook. So unless you have your privacy settings adjusted otherwise, all of your friends—and possibly even more people—can see your phone number.
To see the new feature, go under Account in the upper right corner and select Edit Friends.
Then on the left side, select contacts. You will then see a list of all your friends with the phone numbers they have provided to Facebook. Want to know who can see your number?
Under Account in the upper right corner, select Privacy Preferences.
Look at the contact information setting at the bottom. If it shows something other than what you want (for example, everyone), click on the customize settings link to select what you would prefer. You can even set different settings for your address, email and phone number.
Hopefully, social media platforms will start to get the message that users don’t appreciate all this fiddling with privacy issues. Until then, we’ll stay vigilant and help keep you informed of changes.
Lisa is a Senior Optimization Specialist at Innate – her friends even teased that she A/B tested her name change. Lisa studied Philosophy of Science & Technology at Virginia Tech and is always asking why.