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Privacy Issues Met- Facebook Simplifies Privacy Settings

Facebook is a unique social network

facebook real estateWe’ve been talking about privacy issues online for some time, but most recently, conversation was sparked by Benn’s article, “Do we have a reasonable right to privacy online?” We received several calls since that story published with people wanting to opine or ask questions about how they can safeguard themselves in this era of “transparency” where everyone is supposed to behave humanly and “be themselves.”

This week, Facebook announced it is setting up a Safety Advisory Board to improve safety followed shortly by the announcement today that Facebook has rolled out new, simplified privacy settings.

Facebook is known to be a hotbed for identity theft, as many people have their information exposed to everyone including their home town, birth date including year (take the year off, folks), can probably figure out who your mom is and then her maiden name, your schools, etc. that allow them to answer standard security questions. But don’t be alarmed, you can (and should) set your privacy settings pretty high- we recommend only allowing people you’ve become friends with to see any information about you other than your name. We also recommend being careful in your selection of who you allow into your network and using common sense in not accepting friend requests from “Brittneey Spearzz” or “Hawt Dawg.”

Facebook has a long way to go to secure member data, but at least they are being proactive. If YOU were on the Facebook Safety Advisory Board, what would YOU recommend they change to make members more secure?

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Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.



  1. Ken Brand

    December 10, 2009 at 8:15 am

    This is an interesting topic. It’s gathering momentum and swelling into a wave….a tall one. Articles on this topic are appearing everywhere, for good reason. Indexing tools and methods are exploding, along with the technology to mine and monazite it.

    This is sorta random, but I think there are armies of people scrambling to become Social Media Gurus and feverishly working to figure out how to monazite their knowledge through teaching and speaking about how and why Social Media can change your life.

    The guru market is crowded and growing faster than the target market. If someone wanted to tap into the largest market audience and have people clamoring for their presentations, a super magnet topic would be “How To Protect Your Privacy On-Line. The market for this would be huge, everyone is concerned about their privacy and if they aren’t, it’d be easy to educate them about the danger. Even those that feel Social Media is dumb are threatened by identity theft, etc. There’s gold in them there hills and it’s a area that directly benefits the consumer.

    Just thinking out loud.


  2. Missy Caulk

    December 13, 2009 at 11:27 am

    I changed mine this week. This is a good start, I am more concerned that some of my tweets are showing up in Google Alerts for my name.
    Not that anyone in A2 Googles my name but….

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