5 Facebook Privacy Settings you NEED to know.

Facebook has changed and with the changes it would be a good time to remind you of your Privacy Settings.

  • What information do you just want your Friends to see and what information don’t you mind sharing with the world?
  • The new Ticker (a real time activity panel) shows you what your Facebook Friends are up to right now.  This has sent alarm bells among my Facebook friends!
  • Suddenly you can see the post of complete strangers if your Friend has commented or liked their post.
  • The reason you can see THEIR posts is because THEY haven’t set THEIR privacy settings.

So if YOU don’t want to let the world know what YOU are thinking or doing YOU need to set your Privacy Settings Properly.

Here are five Privacy Settings you need know about.

Facebook Privacy Settings

1.  Control your Default Privacy

(This is number 1 in the Facebook Privacy Settings see above)

Unless you are a public figure or only use your profile for work related posts, I would highly recommend you select Friends as your default Settings as illustrated above.  This means that only people that you have chosen as Friends will be able to see your updates.

You can change the settings for each post,

  1. so you can still publish to the world or
  2. limit your post to only certain friends or
  3. certain lists of people.


If you haven’t created lists yet, why not?

See: Facebook: Why you should put your Friends in lists

2.  How you Connect

(This is number 2 in the Facebook Privacy Settings above)

If you go to Edit Settings on the “How you Connect” option, most of you will see this box.  If you have already changed to your Timeline, the word “Timeline” replaces “Profile”.

  • My settings are set so that Everyone can find me, but I am very selective about what I display on my Profile (See the Privacy on your Profile).
  • I allow anyone to send me a Friend request, but you might want to change it to Friends of Friends if you want to avoid spam requests
  • I only allow Friends to message me (I changed this after receiving two marriage proposals from complete strangers!)
  • I only allow Friends to post on my wall
  • I only allow Friends to see wall posts by others on my wall (Highly recommend this for Privacy on the Ticker)

3.  Privacy on your Profile

Go to your Profile and select Edit Profile (top right)

You will see this.  Adjust your settings by clicking on the little icons to the right of each piece of information.

N.B.  Make sure your year of birth is not visible (any basic security questions ask for your full date of birth, do you want everyone having access to this information?)

Make sure you go through all the options, not just your Basic Information.

4.  Photo Privacy

From your Profile go to your Photos

In the top blue bar, select Photos

You can select the Privacy Settings for each album or individual photographs depending how they were uploaded.

5.  Subscriptions

You can now opt to allow subscribers.

  • Subscribers will only see public posts (not the ones that are only published to Friends)
  • Anyone who sends a Friends Request automatically becomes a subscriber

If you want to want to edit your Subscribers list.

Go to Profile and Select Subscribers

You will see a box like this when you click on Edit Settings.

Make any adjustments if you need to.

Please let me know if these five points are as clear as they can be and share this post with your Facebook Friends.  Too many people have not changed their basic Privacy Settings from the Facebook Default.




Nicky Kriel

Nicky Kriel is a Social Media Coach & Trainer inspiring, educating and empowering Business Owners to use Social Media more strategically. She is also the author of How to Twitter for Business Success. For more information visit http://www.nickykriel.com or to find out about her courses that she runs in Guildford visit http://www.nickykriel.com/courses

Doreen - 26th September 2011

So helpful! I’m following you on networked blogs. Thanks for this post!

Martha Giffen - 26th September 2011

Such an informative post! It doesn’t matter to me because I’m biz-focused on Facebook but for others that are freaking out, you have given the clearest of instructions! Thanks!

Karen - 26th September 2011

‎Many thanks, I have been able to reset my settings. Please advise about this post which several friends have used. What are the settings options that appear over the subscribe link?

Please do me a favor: hover over my name here, wait for the box to load and then hover over the “Subscribe” link. Then uncheck the “Comments and likes” choice. I would rather my comments on friends’ posts not be made public. Thanks! Then repost if you don’t want your EVERY MOVE posted on the right for everyone to see

    Nicky Kriel - 26th September 2011

    Hi Karen
    It was partly because I saw a few of my friends posting this update which doesn’t make sense that I thought I should a clear, easy to follow post.

    The subscribe button on Friends is there to help you sort out the posts you see in your News Feed.
    You would only see your friends comments and likes on other posts if you have chosen them to be in your “Close Friends” list.
    So most of the people hovering their mouse over their friend will not see the “Comments and likes” choice.
    It doesn’t stop you from seeing all their activites on the Ticker, but you would no longer be notified about what they are commenting and liking on your New Feed. You would be able to see all this activity on their Profile.
    So all their activities would still be visible on the Ticker until they change their Privacy Settings.

    Hope this helps.


Karen - 26th September 2011

Thanks, Nicky. On my home page I have recent stories and earlier today underneath it. When I click on my name in top right corner I get my updates and comments etc. Chat is on both of these. I am not sure what is ticker and news feed, or if I even have both!

    Nicky Kriel - 26th September 2011

    Hi Karen,
    Your News Feed is what you see on your Home Page.
    Your Profile is what you see when you click on your name in the top right corner.
    The Ticker is towards the top right of your News Feed if you have hidden your chat or at the top of your chat. It shows what your friends are doing right at the moment. If you have a lot of friends it will be moving faster than if you just have a few.


Jackie Walker - 27th September 2011

Thanks Nicky, I’d made a few changes already, but it was good to make sure they were the important ones :)

Naomi Richards - 28th September 2011

Thank you for writing this blog. Great advice for a novice like me.

Helena Alkhas - 30th September 2011

Nicky, after some days without having the time to check it, I’m so glad I saved the screen! You made such a great job in explaining in easy to use directions and all the changes in FB became accessible and manageable ! Again, you brought us great and useful information! Thank you!

    Nicky Kriel - 30th September 2011

    Hi Helen,
    I am glad that my post has motivated you to check your Privacy Settings on Facebook. It is easy when you know how. Thank you for letting me know. :)

aljosa mocnik - 22nd November 2012

How to hide what you like from friends who choose you to be on their list on close friends?

Johnny Mobasher - 24th November 2012

Hi Nicky, •

Re: The new Ticker (a real time activity panel) shows you what your Facebook Friends are up to right now.

I just cant get the panel!! How do I activate it to appear?

Many thanks


    Nicky Kriel - 24th November 2012

    Hi Johnny

    Just checked your Facebook Profile, you seem to have two personal profiles?? According to Facebook, “Ticker only appears when your network of friends and connections meets a certain threshold of activity.Ticker will appear as you connect to more friends, subscriptions, and pages.” I can see that one of the accounts has only 2 friends. You need to connect to people to see their activity in your news feed.
    P.S. According to Facebook’s terms of use you are only allowed one Facebook Profile.


      Johnny Mobasher - 24th November 2012

      Many Thanks.
      starneg as it seems , I need to find my otehr personal profile! I think the second profile might have been connected to my business page! I’ll check. many thanks Nicky. Impressive fast responce.

Le Shelmidine - 29th January 2013

i was just wondering, if you have your photos set to friends only and a a friend shares your photo, than can all their friends see it, or just your mutual friends?? if all there friends see it, is there an option to stop friends from sharing your photos??

    Nicky Kriel - 30th January 2013

    If you have set your photos to Friends only and a friend shares your photo, only mutual friends will see it.


Julie - 2nd March 2013

Hi Nicky,
I post alot of pictures of my daughter on my Facebook account. I have my privacy settings set to friends only, however, my brother in law is sharing my photo albums on his timeline. I dont want his friends and their friends, the public in other words seeing my pictures so how do I stop him from sharing my albums on his timeline? Until I can figure this out, I have disabled my Facebook account which in turn disabled my photos. I would like to return to my Facebook account if there is a way to stop the sharing. Please advise. Thanks!

    Le Shelmidine - 2nd March 2013

    I asked her the same question above! even if they share your photos, only your mutual friends will see it, not all their friends.

Pir Ahsan Jan - 29th March 2013

can u help me same setting now today upload the facebook
5 Facebook Privacy Settings you NEED to know.
give me same hint today
facebook change the setting please help me Nicky Kriel

Colleen Brain - 19th April 2013

re; Security Issues – Timeline
I am concerned, when I test my view on my timeline as ‘Public’ it would appear that people CAN see comments I have made. I do not want this. I believe my settings are for close friends so I don’t understand why this is happening. I have tried to research this aspect but I fear I am missing the plot. When I have tried to find people, I occasionally come across FB timelines that show nothing but the bare minimum. This is what I want. I’d appreciate your help. I know this must be something that you have been asked over and over. I apologise for my repetition.

Joe - 9th May 2013

Hi, Please help? On Facebook: how do i put I am married on my profile but not link to who it is! I love my wife more than anything, but don’t want the world to be into my family info. My wife sent me a request saying we are married, I clicked yes, hay I love her and don’t want to ever upset her. I just want to keep my family safe form tons of people that are on my friends list that I don’t even know. I have the friends thing for work so people know about me, am a broke artist, trying to find my way to make money at it……..Thank you for your help, Joe

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