You don’t know me, but I know you. How you ask? Well on Facebook your profile is not as private as you believe.
Below are some ways I (and other people) have gotten to know you, your family, and your friends.
We know the type of articles you read
Did you know if you are logged into your Facebook account and ‘like’ an article, it shows up in your friend’s news feed? Did you also know, when you comment on an article while logged into your Facebook account, anyone who reads that article can click your name and browse your profile? Oh, and if you list your place of employment or school, people can see that too.
We know the type of companies you like
On the right side of your Facebook are advertisements that companies pay to have seen by target demographics. If you ‘like’ that company page and they have an advertisement, it will show on your friend’s Facebook advertisement section.
Facebook allows companies to sponsor their page statuses. These pages show up in your friend’s news feeds and show that you ‘like’ the company page.
When Facebook suggests pages for your friends to join, it also shows how many other friends ‘like’ the same thing, including you.
We know what groups you have joined
There are many groups on Facebook and each group has their own individual settings. Groups that are ‘secret’, cannot be found via search and members/posts can’t be seen. Groups that are ‘closed’, can be found via search and members can be seen, but posts can’t. Groups that are ‘open’, can be found via search and members/posts can be seen.
We know how opinionated you are
Remember that news article that got your blood boiling and you made that inappropriate comment? Well, it showed up in your friend’s news feed. Also, anyone who follows that news outlet read your comment and probably visited your Facebook profile to learn more about you (because that’s what nosy people do).
We know where you hang out and who you were with
Though you may have set up your Facebook to prevent people from tagging you without permission, people can still see a photo, click on your name, and visit your Facebook profile. Now people know that you went out last Saturday and had a great time.
We know your friends
You may think no one can see your information, but if your friends has not adjusted their account settings, your private photos may appear on Facebook. This particular person liked photos on Instagram and those photos appeared on my news feed. If I’m nosy enough, I can now go to this person’s profile and view their photos.
We know who you are even though you go by a fake name
Even though you go by a fake name on Facebook, I bet you didn’t use a fake email to sign up for the account. If I decide to do a search for who in my email contact list is on Facebook, I can still find you. So if your boss or coworker or grandpa has your email, they can still find you on Facebook.
As you can see there are many ways people can learn more about you on Facebook. This post was getting super long, so I decided to split it into two. Tomorrow, I will post some ways you can avoid the above happening to you.
Do you have any other ways you can see people’s information on Facebook? Share in the comments.
An urban planning PhD student finding peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.
Photo Credit: Lisa-Marie Pierre