Keep Calm & Facebook On…or NOT?

On the return flight of our most recent family holiday, I leaned over and asked my husband if the plane had wifi. He didn’t think so except to play the in-flight movies, so I couldn’t use the Internet. Bummer! This was the first time I didn’t bring anything to do on the plane aside from my computer. And what to do with a computer sans internet? Needless to say, I was bored for a while…and then my 9-month old daughter woke up from her very short nap 😉

My point here is that I don’t (or can’t) really use my computer for anything worthwhile (in my opinion) unless I have the internet. I need the internet for EVERYTHING I do on my computer! Like Gmail (personal and work), Google Calendar (personal and work), Google Drive (personal and work), COETAIL, Digg Reader, Facebook, Twitter, my personal blog (which I haven’t had time to update since the summer!), etc. I think it’s obvious that through utilizing all of these apps/websites, I am putting myself out there. I am in a sense publishing information about myself for all the world to see.

Call me naive, but I honestly have never paid much attention to my privacy settings until reading some of the suggested readings for this week, like Beware: the Internet could own your future. I just didn’t see the importance (and I am still a bit skeptical). My feelings were that I didn’t have anything to hide, so why would I need to worry about my privacy settings, right? Not exactly, I guess!

Literally, right after reading the course readings for this week, which speak about the importance of privacy settings and with Facebook in particular, I log in to Facebook. And upon logging in, I am greeted with this message:

I guess there’s a difference between security and privacy, but I think they’re related. Upon following through with the 3 ways that Facebook suggested to increase my security, I also took a look at my Facebook privacy settings. I learned that my privacy settings were not as private as I thought they were! And I changed them immediately. Of course, finding the privacy settings were a bit confusing as was how to change them to display what I wanted them to display. The following article does a nice job of more easily explaining How to Control Your Facebook Privacy Settings.

I think privacy has A LOT to do with what YOU feel comfortable with. Like I said before, I don’t have anything to hide (at least not that I know of!), but I also don’t want any creepers creeping up on my personal information. Do you think privacy settings are as important for adults as they are for our children and our students? I warmly welcome your comments below.

 

One thought on “Keep Calm & Facebook On…or NOT?

  1. I totally agree with you that privacy has a lot to do with what YOU feel comfortable with….some people are okay with living their life for the world to see and don’t really give it much thought, while others are more aware of their footprint, security settings and privacy issues. I recently read a fascinating interview with Edward Snowden about “How to Reclaim Your Privacy” (link to theintercept.com). It gets a little technical towards the end, but the first part is all about security practices that the average person should adopt. He talks about simple ways of how to encrypt your hard drive (in case your laptop is stolen, so people can’t access your personal info) and how to use a password manager. This tip I think many of us are guilty of – using the same password for multiple sites/log-ins that we have used our whole lives. He mentions that people can get access to this password from some random service that we stopped using in 2009, but then apply it to any of our current accounts. Anyway, it’s worth a read, and might have you re-think some of your privacy settings beyond Facebook:)

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