Everything you need to know about Facebook security settings

Security and privacy are sacrosanct on the web, especially on social networks such as Facebook where you spend most of your day for information such as personal data, phone numbers, email addresses, messages etc. In the wrong hands, this information could compromise security and privacy in real life. On the other hand, Facebook regularly changes the security and privacy settings. So it makes sense to check from time to time if new or changed options have been taken. Here is a detailed guide to Facebook's security settings.

Security Settings

There are two ways to access this tab. The quickest way is to click on the globe button in the upper right corner (usually you use this button to check for the latest notifications) and select Settings. Slightly more complicated: click the arrow button next to the globe and look for Settings in the drop-down list. Select the Security tab in Settings. Here you will find a list of settings that will help you secure your account. If you want to read a detailed description of a setting, click Edit.

Facebook Alerts

This is the setting where Facebook stores a list of the devices you usually use. Enable alerts so that the social network will send you an email notification whenever it detects an authorization from a new device. This will alert you when an unwanted person logs into your account. If this happens, change your password to keep them out. We recommend that you enable this useful feature.

Login Confirmation

This is Facebook's two-factor authentication. Once you enable this feature, the first time you log in to the social network, you'll receive a numeric PIN via SMS (text message) and you'll need to enter it along with your password. It's a small effort that is well worth the extra peace of mind. Highly recommended! You can also get 10 one-time use "emergency" codes here. These are useful if you can't receive SMS. For example, if you lost your phone and want to change your Facebook password - but can't because you don't have your phone. Then you'll be glad you have these codes.

Code Generator

This feature allows you to use codes from the Facebook mobile application instead of an SMS, or select another application. If you already use a good code generator (e.g. Google Authenticator), why not link it to Facebook as well? Use it or not - it's up to you. But it is recommended that you at least give it a chance.

Passwords for applications

You'll need this option if you use your Facebook account to log in to third-party apps or services, if two-factor authentication is enabled for your account, and if these features don't work with others. Instead, you can get login permissions for apps. You can find more information here.

Public key

On this tab you can publish your public OpenPGP key. In this case the key will be displayed in your account information. Your friends can then send you encrypted messages with this key - so that this message cannot be read by an unwanted recipient if it falls into the wrong hands. Here is a summary of how it works. You receive two keys; public and private. Your friends and acquaintances can use your public key to encrypt messages they send to you. When you receive such a message, you use your secret key to decrypt it. This is called asymmetric encryption, where messages are encrypted with one key and decrypted with another. In practice, even if someone hacks your e-mail, they won't be able to read your conversations as long as you are the sole owner of the private key. You can also enable the option for Facebook to encrypt every email sent to you.

Your trusted contacts

Here you can select the users who can be asked for help if you cannot access your account. In this case, call them and request a one-time password. Enter this information and your access will be restored. Remember, the security of your account depends on your trusted contacts.

Known Devices

This is a list of the browsers and applications registered on the devices you use to connect to Facebook. If you log in to the social network from any of these devices, Facebook will not send you a login notification. Don't forget to clean up this list from time to time. And definitely do it if you lose a device.

Where you log in from

This useful setting allows you to check which devices you are logged in to Facebook from. Did you use the social network on a friend's computer and forget to log out? Or, even worse, on a public computer in the library? Do you see a suspicious session that you're sure you didn't start? Close all those sessions - and change your password. Estate contacts are people who can manage your pages after a death: correct a post in your column, respond to requests from new friends, or update your profile picture. This person cannot post on your behalf.

Deactivate your account

If you want to take a break from Facebook, you can temporarily deactivate your account. Your posts will be hidden, but you can come back to them whenever you want, simply by logging back into Facebook. You can also delete your Facebook account forever, but you won't find this option under Settings.

Two other useful options

Open the General tab in Settings. In addition to personal information, you'll find the date your password was last changed. It is highly recommended to change your password from time to time; and of course to use reliable combinations. In addition, you will find the Download a copy of your Facebook data button. We often post important things on social networks, but we may neglect to store them in another place: for example, photos and videos from a wedding or photos of your grandchild. If you lose your files, you can at least restore the ones you posted on Facebook-and with this feature, you won't have to struggle through a lot of posts.
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