How to Protect Your Privacy On Facebook?

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Protecting your privacy on Facebook is becoming less of a preference and more of a necessity, especially as the social media giant continues subjecting its users to targeted ads, trackers, and vulnerabilities.

But don’t worry – you don’t need to take drastic measures by deleting your account and avoiding the platform entirely.

Instead, there are numerous settings you can change to enhance your overall privacy, and I discuss them all in this guide.

I also recommend several add-ons and extensions for privatizing your Facebook experience even more!

Stay tuned for everything you need to know.

What Info Does Facebook Collect?

facebook on ios phone

If you’re one of the 68% of Americans who use the popular social media site, you might already suspect that Facebook collects everything you say or do on its platform – and that suspicion is correct!

This includes anything you post on your timeline, such as pictures, political opinions, and even memes.

In fact, Facebook has access to all of your deleted posts, too!

"68% of Americans who use the popular social media site, suspect that Facebook collects everything you say or do on its platform."

And that’s not all.

It also has access to your IP address, the messages you send on Messenger, the groups you join, your search activity, and your overall social circle.

Or, if you click on a Facebook ad, the platform will collect that data and post similar ads on your news feed.

And that’s still not it.

Did you know Facebook also collects your data from other platforms?

For example, if you visit one of its advertising partners, Facebook will store that data and show you products from that site on your news feed.

And that’s not even getting into Facebook marketing tools, something many websites implement to make it easier to share the things you find with your Facebook friends.

facebook active advertisements

But it gets scarier.

Facebook also has access to your browsing history and location, along with your device data (all devices used to access the site) and, if you use Facebook’s built-in “send money” feature, your payment details and billing address.

And what about the websites and platforms owned by Facebook?

Two examples are Instagram and WhatsApp – the former of which is meant to be a secure, encrypted communication platform.

Unfortunately, since Facebook acquired the app in 2014, it’s safe to say it’s no longer ideal for privacy-conscious users.

In fact, you should automatically assume that any website or app owned by Facebook also collects all the information you put into it.

Another thing to be wary of is the apps you use on Facebook, as it’s not unheard of for an approved app to turn into a huge privacy concern.

For example, in 2018, it came to light that Cambridge Analytica (allegedly) used data collected from 50 million people on Facebook to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.

The cause of this data collection?

In 2014, Academic Aleksandr Kogan created a Facebook app and paid users to take a psychological test while the app collected the user’s information.

As a result, 50 million Facebook profiles were mined for data, thus proving that even official Facebook apps are cause for concern.

For an in-depth discussion on the scandal, see The Verge’s YouTube video below:

In closing, here’s a (non-comprehensive) list of the data Facebook collects:

  • Your IP address
  • Your age
  • Your gender
  • Your employer
  • Your relationship status
  • Your location
  • Your photos (from which it gathers biometric facial data without your consent)
  • Your political preferences
  • The apps you use on the site
  • The things you like
  • The groups you join
  • Everything you post (including anything you delete)
  • Your messages
  • The ads you click on its site
  • Your search history (on Facebook)
  • Your Facebook friends
  • Anything your Facebook friends post about you (and vice versa)
  • Your browsing history (in general)
  • And much more

Keep reading for step-by-step tips on how to stay private on Facebook!

How Do I Check the Information Facebook Has on Me?

Finding the information Facebook has on you is sometimes frightening – but also necessary to get the full picture.

So, if you want to check that information, you can do so by:

  1. In the upper-right corner of Facebook, click the arrow and select “Settings & privacy.”
  1. Select “Settings.”
facebook settings and privacy
  1. On the left-hand side, select “Your Facebook information.”
  1. Select “Access your information.”
  1. On the left-hand side, you’ll see a list of categories that contain the information Facebook has on you. Select them one at a time for the complete picture (or the one that interests you the most).

Just keep in mind – the longer you’ve had your Facebook account, the more information you’ll see.

This includes your deleted friends, interests, and personal information, so you might spend several hours just going through everything!

Does Facebook Listen to Everything I Say?

fb logo on ios phone

According to Facebook, no, it doesn’t listen to everything you say.

In fact, in response to such rumors, the platform released the following message:

“Facebook does not use your phone’s microphone to inform ads or to change what you see in News Feed. Some recent articles have suggested that we must be listening to people’s conversations in order to show them relevant ads. This is not true. We show ads based on people’s interests and other profile information – not what you’re talking out loud about.”

That said, billion-dollar businesses are known to downplay the truth or straight-up lie.

Furthermore, several content creators on YouTube have tested the theory.

Here’s a video by WWLTV that alleges that Facebook does, in fact, listen to you through your microphone:

So, if you’re (rightfully) concerned that Facebook is listening to everything you say, here’s how to disable Facebook’s access to your microphone on iOS and Android devices:

  1. Click on your Settings app.
  2. For iOS, scroll down to the list of apps installed on your phone and select “Facebook.”
  3. For Android, click the search function and type “permission,” and then select “Permission manager.”
  4. For iOS, disable the microphone by toggling the slider to the left.
  5. For Android, tap “Microphone” in the list of permissions and then “Facebook.” Change the microphone access to “Deny.”

8 Things to Change to Protect Your Privacy On Facebook

facebook browser

Giving up Facebook is a hard thing to do.

In fact, as an American turned European expat, it’s my primary method of communication with my friends and family back in the US.

The good news is, there are ways to protect your privacy on Facebook – so you can enjoy the best of both worlds (social media and privacy).

To help you out, here are eight Facebook privacy tips, complete with step-by-step instructions:

1. Minimize the Data On Your Profile & Who Can See It

As you now know from the above section, “What Info Does Facebook Collect?”, there’s a monumental amount of information that the social media platform knows about you.

This includes everything you’ve ever shared with or on the site.

Thus, your first step is deleting any information you don’t want Facebook (or anyone else) to know.

On PC

To minimize the data on your profile on PC, follow these steps:

  1. From your news feed, click your name and profile picture in the upper-right corner.
  1. Under your name and displayed bio (of any), click “About.”
facebook bio
  1. You’ll see the following categories on the left-hand side: Overview, Work and Education, Places Lived, Contact and Basic Info, Family and Relationships, Details About You, and Life Events.
facebook browser about
  1. Depending on the options (“Edit” or “Delete”), delete everything you can and edit the rest to something fake (i.e., a fake birthday and address).
  2. Additionally, change the visibility settings for each category to “Friends” or “Only me.”
facebook visibility settings

On iOS/Android

To minimize the data on your profile on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open your Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, click your name and profile picture (left-hand side, under the “Homeicon).
  3. On your profile, select “Edit Public Details.”
  4. You’ll see the following categories: Current City, Workplace, Education, Hometown, and Relationship Status, along with Hobbies, Featured Stories, and Links.
  5. Click each category and “Delete” or “Edit” the information you don’t want Facebook or other people to have.
  6. Additionally, change the visibility settings for each category to “Friends” or “Only me.”

2. Delete Off-Facebook Data

Unfortunately, there’s no way to delete the data Facebook already gathered on you – despite the site’s “Clear History” button in its “Off-Facebook Activity” menu.

Still, according to the social media platform, this setting can be used to prevent advertising companies from using your collected data for targeted ads.

You can also use the “Manage Future Activity” setting to keep your history cleared by default in the future.

While this won’t stop other companies from sending Facebook your data, it will, again, stop Facebook from using that data to show you targeted ads.

But there is a downside – turning off “Future Activity” means you can’t use the Facebook Login tool anymore (that lets you sign in to other sites via Facebook).

If this isn’t an issue for you, here’s how to clear your history and disable its collection by default:

On PC

To delete your off-Facebook data on PC, follow these steps:

  1. In the upper-right corner of your Facebook page, click the arrow and select “Settings & Privacy.”
  2. Select “Privacy Shortcuts.”
  3. Under “Your Facebook Information,” select “View or clear your off-Facebook activity.”
your facebook information on mobile
  1. On the right-hand side, select “Clear History.”
  1. When prompted, confirm the deletion by hitting “Clear History” again.
  2. Next, select “Manage Your Off-Facebook Activity.” If prompted, reenter your Facebook password and click it a second time.
  3. Under “More Options,” select “Manage Future Activity.” Confirm by selecting it a second time when prompted.
facebook more options
  1. Click the slider next to “Future Off-Facebook Activity.”
future off facebook activity
  1. When the pop-up displays, select “Turn Off.”

On iOS/Android

To delete your off-Facebook data on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner. Note: the three lines won’t appear from your profile.
  3. Scroll down and tap “Settings & Privacy.”
  4. Tap “Privacy Shortcuts.”
  5. Under “Your Facebook Information,” tap “View or clear your off-Facebook activity.”
  6. Scroll down. Under “What You Can Do,” tap “Clear History.” Confirm by tapping again.
  7. Next, tap “More Options” and then “Manage Future Activity.” Confirm by tapping again.
  8. Toggle the slider to the left to disable your future off-Facebook activity from being stored. Confirm by tapping “Turn Off.”

3. Disable Face Recognition

How often do you upload photos to Facebook and tag yourself or others in them?

Do others do the same with photos of you?

If so, Facebook uses those photos for facial recognition.

The scariest part is you aren’t asked to opt-in – the platform does it automatically.

Luckily, after the FTC charged Facebook with a $5 billion fine in July 2019, the social media platform rolled out an option for all users to disable face recognition in its app.

Here’s how to do it:

On PC

To disable face recognition on PC, follow these steps:

  1. On your Facebook page, select the arrow in the upper-right corner.
  2. Select “Settings & Privacy” and then “Privacy Shortcuts.”
  3. Under “Privacy,” select “Control face recognition.”
facebook privacy
  1. Next to “Face Recognition,” click “Edit.”
fb face recognation settings
  1. Change “Yes” to “No.”
facebook face recognation settings toggle

On iOS/Android

To disable face recognition on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner.
  3. Scroll down. Tap “Settings & Privacy” and then “Privacy Shortcuts.”
  4. Under “Privacy,” tap “Control face recognition.”
  5. Under “Face Recognition,” tap the arrow on the right.
  6. Tap “No.”

4. Opt-Out of Data Collection By Facebook Partners

As mentioned earlier, you can use Facebook to log in to any of its partner sites – and there are a lot of them.

The issue is, when you do so, you’re allowing those partners access to your Facebook accountincluding the data Facebook collects on you!

For example, Facebook’s partner sites have access to your name, photos, email address, and other visible data on your profile.

The good news is, after the Cambridge Analytica scandal discussed above, Facebook automatically started withdrawing access to any third-party apps that haven’t been used in 90 days.

The better news: you can go in yourself and revoke access to any leftover apps.

While this won’t delete any data previously harvested by companies, it will at least prevent third-party apps from collecting data from your Facebook account in the future.

It’s also super easy to implement.

Here’s how:

On PC

To opt-out of data collection by Facebook partners on PC, follow these steps:

  1. Change your password on any websites/apps you plan to remove.
  2. On your Facebook page, select the down arrow in the upper-right corner.
  3. Select “Settings & Privacy” and then “Settings.”
  4. On the left-hand menu, select “Apps and Websites.”
  1. Select “See More.”
facebook apps and websites
  1. You’ll see a list of apps with “Expired” or “Active” next to their name. “Remove” them all.
  1. Next, scroll all the way down. Under “Preferences,” select “Turn Off” to the far right of “Apps, websites and games.” Confirm by selecting it again.

On iOS/Android

To opt-out of data collection by Facebook partners on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Change your password on any websites/apps you plan to remove.
  2. Open the Facebook app.
  3. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner.
  4. Scroll down and tap “Settings & Privacy” and then “Settings.”
  5. Scroll to “Permissions” and tap “Apps and Websites.”
  6. Tap “See More.”
  7. Tap each app, both “Expired” and “Active,” and “Remove” them.
  8. Next, scroll all the way down. Under “Preferences” and “Apps, websites, and games,” tap “Turn Off.” Confirm when prompted.

5. Protect Your Account From Cyber Criminals

Facebook isn’t the only concern you should have.

It is, unfortunately, not uncommon for social media accounts to get compromised, thanks to cybercriminals.

When this happens, there’s a lot more at stake than Facebook and its partners having access to your personal information.

In fact, lives have been ruined as a result of hacked Facebook accounts.

The worst part is, it isn’t always the fault of the user.

For example, in 2019, Facebook admitted that millions of users’ Instagram accounts and their passwords were being stored in plain text online.

And earlier this year, as a result of that (now patched) vulnerability, the personal data of over 500 million Facebook users were posted in a low-level hacking forum.

Luckily, there’s a solution: enabling two-factor authentication.

But depending on the method you choose, that solution is still somewhat flawed.

To specify, if you choose the text message two-factor authentication method, you’re giving Facebook access to your phone number.

And, in the past, Facebook admitted to using those phone numbers for advertising purposes.

This is why, if Facebook doesn’t already have your phone number (and even if it does), I recommend using an authentication app (like Authy) or a security key instead.

Either way, here’s how to set up two-factor authentication:

On PC

To enable two-factor authentication on a PC, follow these steps:

  1. On your Facebook page, click the down arrow in the upper-right corner, select “Settings & Privacy,” and then “Settings.”
  2. In the left-side menu, select “Security and Login.”
  3. Under “Two-Factor Authentication,” select “Use two-factor authentication.”
facebook two factor authentication
  1. Select your preferred method for two-factor authentication and follow the prompts to set it up.
facebook security network

On iOS/Android

To enable two-factor authentication on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open your Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner.
  3. Scroll down. Under “Settings & Privacy,” select “Settings.”
  4. Under “Account,” tap “Password and Security.”
  5. Scroll to “Two-Factor Authentication” and tap “Use two-factor authentication.”
  6. Select your preferred method of two-factor authentication and follow the prompts to set it up.

6. Limit Everything to Do With Ads

You might not be able to stop Facebook and its marketing services from collecting and (to some extent) sharing your information, but you can control specific parts of Facebook’s ad system.

But what, exactly, does Facebook’s ad system entail?

I touched on it briefly above, but to go into more detail, it collects your data from its partner sites and uses it for its own ads.

But it gets weirder.

Facebook also shows you ads off Facebook, thanks to its advertising partners using your Facebook activity to target you with ads.

But the weirdest thing about Facebook’s ads system is the ads that add your friends’ names to them.

For example, you might see an ad that says, “[Your friend] likes [company/service/].

Of course, this means your Facebook friends also see your name next to products or services you’ve used – even if you didn’t like the product or service!

Don’t be fooled by Facebook’s disclaimer at the bottom of its “Control the Ads You See” help article, either.

While you can technically “opt-out” of Facebook’s ad system via the Digital Advertising Alliance, the Digital Alliance of Canada, or the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance, the opt-out programs are widely debated and said to be just as – if not more – invasive than Facebook’s ad system.

facebook ads disclosure

Don’t worry, though.

I have good news on this front: you can disable everything I mentioned above.

Here’s how!

On PC

To limit Facebook ads on PC, follow these steps:

  1. On your Facebook page, select the down arrow in the upper-right corner, select “Settings & Privacy,” and then “Settings.”
  2. Towards the bottom of the left-hand menu, select “Ads.”
  3. On the left-hand menu, select “Ad Settings.”
facebook ad preferences
  1. Under “Manage Data Used to Show You Ads,” select “Data about your activity from partners.”
  1. Next to “Use Data from Partners,” toggle the switch off.
  1. Do the same for “Ads shown off of Facebook” and “Social Interactions.”
  1. As a bonus, you can also do the same to “Categories used to reach you” and “Audience-based advertising.”

On iOS/Android

To limit Facebook ads on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner.
  3. Scroll down to “Settings & Privacy” and tap it. Select “Settings.”
  4. Scroll down to “Permissions” and select “Ad Preferences.”
  5. Under “Ad Preferences” and next to “Advertisers” and “Ad Topics,” tap “Ad Settings.”
  6. Under “Manage Data Used to Show You Ads,” tap “Data about your activity from partners.”
  7. Next to “Use Data from Partners,” toggle the switch off.
  8. Do the same for “Ads shown off of Facebook” and “Social Interactions.”

As a bonus, you can also do the same to “Categories used to reach you” and “Audience-based advertising.”

7. Hide Your Facebook Profile on Search Engines

Somewhat alarmingly, Facebook automatically displays your profile in any search engine when the searcher includes your name and location – and sometimes just your name.

Disabling this might seem more appealing for those wishing to stay hidden from others (like stalkers, employers, or ex-partners).

However, everyone should consider hiding their Facebook profile.

Why?

Because, otherwise, it makes it easy to dox you.

What Is Doxxing?

Doxxing is a term used for gathering and sharing PII (Personal Identifying Information) about a specific individual online, typically with the intent to do harm.

All a potential doxxer needs is your name and, if that’s not enough, almost any other identifying piece of information about you, like your location (even past locations), phone number, or work, to find your Facebook profile.

And with your Facebook profile, depending on what’s visible, they can get a lot more.

The worst part about doxxers is they’re almost always trying to hurt you.

This is likely because, as shown in a study done by the NYU Tandon School of Engineering, the primary motivators for doxxing are justice…and revenge.

And the two motivators following justice and revenge are competition and politics.

In other words: you might be completely innocent and still a target for doxxing.

But doxxers don’t (typically) aim to hurt you physically.

No, they either spread your private details to others (who will likely do more harm), or they go straight for the kill.

And remember, they play dirty.

It’s not uncommon for a doxxer to create fake screenshots, pictures, or stories about you and share them with your employer, family, and friends.

If your Facebook profile is easy to find, it makes it incredibly easy for doxxers to get this information.

Even if your visibility settings are private, the person might send you a friend request from a fake account – including a fake account of a close friend.

The good news is, it’s relatively easy to hide your Facebook profile.

Here’s how:

On PC

To hide your Facebook profile on PC, follow these steps:

  1. On your Facebook page, click the down arrow in the upper-right corner, select “Settings & Privacy,” and then “Settings.”
  2. In the left-hand menu, select “Privacy.”
  3. Next to “Do you want search engines outside of Facebook to link to your profile?” click “Edit” and change it to “No.”
  1. Next, change “Who can look you up using the email address you provided?” and “Who can look you up using the phone number you provided?” to “Only me.”
  1. Finally, as a bonus, change:
  • Who can see your future posts?” to “Friends.”
  • Limit the audience for posts you’ve shared with friends of friends or Public?” to “Limit Past Posts.”
  • Who can send you friend requests?” to “Friends of friends.”
  • Who can see your friends list?” to “Only me.”

On iOS/Android

To hide your Facebook profile on iOS or Android, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Facebook app.
  2. From your news feed, select the three lines in the upper-right corner.
  3. Scroll down to “Settings & Privacy” and tap it. Select “Settings.”
  4. Under “Audience and Visibility,” select “How People Find and Contact You.”
  5. Tap “Do you want search engines outside of Facebook to link to your profile?” and toggle the slider, so the option is disabled and changed to “No.”
  6. Next, change “Who can look you up using the email address you provided?” and “Who can look you up using the phone number you provided?” to “Only me.”
  7. As a bonus, change:
  • Who can send you friend requests?” to “Friends of friends.”
  • Who can see your friends list?” to “Only me.”
  1. Click the back arrow and select “Posts.” Change:
  • Who can see your future posts?” to “Friends.”
  • Limit who can see past posts” to “Limit Past Posts.”

8. Last Privacy Inspection (Messages, Privacy Checkup, & Other Facebook Products)

To end this section, here are several privacy settings you can change to fine-tune your Facebook experience.

It’s not a foolproof solution, but it’s a step in the right direction without forgoing the social media platform entirely.

On PC

Change the following privacy settings on PC:

  1. To disable message requests from strangers on Facebook (typically found in “Message Requests” or “Spam” folders on Messenger), navigate to Settings & Privacy > Settings > Privacy > How You Get Message Requests. Under “Other People,” change “Others on Facebook” to “Don’t Receive Requests.”
facebook manage message request
  1. To utilize Facebook’s Privacy Checkup tool, navigate to Settings & Privacy > Privacy Checkup and click each category to maximize/customize your privacy settings. This will help you privatize anything you missed earlier.
facebook privacy checkup tool
  1. Make sure you maximize your privacy settings on other Facebook-owned websites and apps, such as WhatsApp. Here’s a helpful video to help you do so on WhatsApp.

On iOS/Android

Change the following privacy settings on iOS or Android:

  1. To disable message requests from strangers on Facebook (typically found in “Message Requests” or “Spam” folders on Messenger), open the Facebook Messenger app, click on your profile picture in the upper-right corner, and navigate to Privacy > Message Delivery. Under “Others on Facebook,” change it to “Don’t Receive Requests.”
  2. To utilize Facebook’s Privacy Checkup tool, navigate to Settings & Privacy > Settings > Privacy Checkup (under “Account”) and click each category to maximize/customize your privacy settings. This will help you privatize anything you missed earlier.
  3. Make sure you maximize your privacy settings on other Facebook-owned websites and apps, such as WhatsApp. Here’s a helpful video to help you do so on WhatsApp.

5 Add-Ons & Extensions That Help Beat Facebook Privacy Concerns

If you want to go the extra mile in beating Facebook’s privacy concerns, there are several add-ons and extensions you can take advantage of.

Don’t worry – you don’t need to go digging for them!

I selected my top five favorites to share with you below.

Let’s jump in!

1. Privacy Badger

privacy badger

First up, Privacy Badger is a handy add-on that prevents advertisers and other third-party trackers from following you around the web without your permission.

It does this by studying the behavior of trackers (as opposed to having a preset list of “good” and “bad” sites).

So, for example, if you’re secretly being followed by one of Facebook’s advertising partners, Privacy Badger will block the advertiser and hide you from them.

Privacy Badger is also super easy to use.

Here’s how:

  1. Download and install the add-on for Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Opera.
privacy badger extension
  1. Navigate to Facebook (or any other website).
  2. If the Privacy Badger extension displays “No trackers blocked” or “[Number of] trackers blocked,” then you’re good for now!
  1. However, if a website doesn’t display correctly, turn on the blocked trackers one at a time.
  1. Once the site displays normally, disable any trackers you turned on that are unnecessary to the site’s performance.
  2. Enjoy!

2. Facebook Container

facebook container

I consider Facebook Container an essential add-on for privacy-conscious users – but there is a downside.

Facebook Container is only available for Firefox browser(s).

If you use Firefox, this add-on will prevent Facebook from tracking your movements across the web.

So, how does it work?

By isolating your Facebook identity into a separate “container,” Facebook Container makes it more difficult for Facebook to track your digital footsteps on other websites with third-party cookies.

Here’s how to use it:

  1. Download and install the add-on on your Firefox browser.
facebook container add on
  1. Any open Facebook tabs will be closed, your Facebook cookies will be deleted, and you’ll be logged out of your account.
  2. Reopen Facebook. It will load in the “container” – AKA: a blue-colored browser tab (provided you’re not using dark mode).
active facebook container
  1. Log in normally.
  2. That’s it! Any future Facebook activity is automatically done inside the container. Likewise, any Facebook share buttons you click in other browser tabs will load in the Facebook Container.

3. uBlock Origin

ublock origin

uBlock Origin is not only an amazing alternative to Facebook Container for non-Firefox users, but it’s an amazing add-on in general.

It has a multi-purpose function in that it blocks ads, trackers, and malware sites simultaneously with the help of its partners and its own filter lists.

It gets better.

uBlock Origin is also an amazing tool for users who wish to modify their ad-blocking experience with custom rules and filters.

So, for example, if you want to specifically block something like crypto-mining, you can do so by installing a custom filter.

There’s actually an entire website dedicated to uBlock Origin custom filters – including a bunch specifically for Facebook (like blocking Facebook trackers or Facebook objects on other websites)!

ublock origin custom filters

And that’s just the beginning.

If you’re tech-savvy, you can even experiment with the add-on’s advanced user settings.

But don’t worry – if you’re a beginner or you’re uncomfortable messing with advanced settings, uBlock Origin is still an easy, straightforward add-on to use.

Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Download and install the add-on for Chrome, Firefox (including forks like Pale Moon), Microsoft Edge, Safari, or Opera.
  2. If you don’t want to mess with advanced features, that’s it! You’re done! When navigating different websites, you’ll notice the icon in your browser toolbar displays a number. This is the number of blocked ads and trackers!
  1. If you feel comfortable customizing the advanced features to suit your needs, here’s a video detailing how to do more advanced advert blocking to get you started!
  2. Finally, as a bonus, consider installing one of the filters for blocking Facebook-related trackers and objects! You can specifically search for the word “Facebook” by clicking the search icon under “Name” or “Description” on the FilterLists site.
filter list

4. Disconnect (for Facebook)

disconnect add on

Disconnect is an open-source, all-around add-on that lets you “visualize” and block the undetectable websites that track you.

Not only does this help protect your privacy, but it loads website pages (up to 44%, according to the publisher) faster!

It’s a popular add-on, too.

In 2015, it was given the Innovation Award for the Best Privacy and Security software at South by Southwest, and in 2016, it was named the best privacy tool by the New York Times.

The best part is, it’s available for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Safari!

However, for Firefox users, there’s an alternative (also open-source) called Disconnect for Facebook.

Disconnect for Facebook specifically targets third-party websites from accessing your Facebook, thanks to its powerful firewall.

It also boasts a low memory and CPU footprint!

Here’s how to set up either add-on:

  1. Download and install Disconnect on your Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Opera browser. Or, for Firefox users, download the Disconnect for Facebook add-on.
  2. For the normal Disconnect add-on, if you don’t care about the “visualize” option, that’s it!
  1. But if you want to “visualize” the trackers following you, open the add-on by clicking its icon and select “Visualize page.”
disconnect visualize page
  1. Disconnect for Facebook is even easier! Once you have it installed on Firefox, simply click the icon to turn it on or off. There’s nothing else to it!
facebook disconnect icon

5. VPN Browser Extension

mobile vpn

I saved the best for last!

For the utmost privacy while browsing on Facebook, I recommend using a VPN.

However, if you’re not a fan of the heavyweight VPN apps that install on your desktop, then there’s still an ideal solution: a VPN browser extension.

While a VPN browser extension doesn’t encrypt your entire device, it will secure your connection while browsing on Facebook (provided you’re using the same browser you have the extension installed on).

There are a million reasons to use a VPN with Facebook, too.

For starters, the social media platform can’t see your real IP address, thereby ensuring your location stays hidden.

But, beyond that, a VPN will keep you safe while using Facebook in general.

So, for example, if you accidentally click an IP grabber (they’re all over Facebook), your real IP isn’t in danger of being leaked to shady third parties (like cybercriminals).

But what are the best VPN browser extensions to use?

Don’t worry – I’ve got you covered!

Here are my top three recommendations!

3 Best VPNs for Staying Private on Facebook

First, ExpressVPN offers users, in my opinion, the best VPN browser extension for Facebook!

It’s available for Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge, and you’ll get a WebRTC blocker and a “Spoof your location” feature that stops HTML5 geolocation from revealing your whereabouts.

ExpressVPN also includes an “HTTPS Everywhere” option that automatically connects you to the HTTPS version of sites (when available), plus 3000+ servers in 94 countries.

For an amazing deal on ExpressVPN, click here!

The next VPN browser extension on my list is Surfshark, also available for Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge.

The best part about this VPN is that even its browser extensions are packed full of features!

This includes CleanWeb (for blocking ads, trackers, and malware), Bypasser (for whitelisting certain websites), and a WebRTC blocker.

You’ll also enjoy 3,200+ servers in 65 countries!

For the best deal possible, click here!

surfshark app

Finally, NordVPN offers another ultimate solution for staying private on Facebook.

However, the browser extension is only available for Chrome and Firefox users – which is why it places last on my short list.

But you’ll still enjoy a built-in Adblocker and WebRTC blocker, plus a whopping 5,200+ servers in 60 countries!

Get a huge discount here!

How to Use a VPN Browser Extension?

Using a VPN browser extension is easy!

Just follow these steps:

  1. Sign up and purchase a VPN subscription. If you don’t use one of my recommendations, make sure the VPN you purchase offers a browser extension for your preferred browser.
  2. Download and install the browser extension for your browser. I also recommend downloading the app on your device – but that’s up to you.
  3. Click the VPN icon in your browser toolbar and connect to the nearest server.
  4. Navigate to Settings and enable any additional features like an Adblocker or WebRTC blocker.
  5. Browse Facebook securely!

Conclusion

So, there you have it!

With this in-depth guide on how to stay private on Facebook, there’s no need to stop using the social media platform altogether

Instead, you can enjoy socializing with your friends and family from a stable, private, and secure online environment – for the most part.

After all, there’s no ultimate, one-fix solution for privatizing your Facebook experience.

But following the tips discussed in this guide (and using the recommended browser add-ons and extensions) will give you a great head start!

So, what are you waiting for?

Get to work!

And don’t forget to share this article with your loved ones, so they, too, can stay protected on Facebook!

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Bram Jansen
Bram Jansen
I'm Bram Jansen, a leading expert in the realm of cyberspace, ever since I was little, books like Neuromancer and The Foundation always fascinated me, this fiction of a world that isn't simply based within the real world. As I started growing up, I started gaining interest in how I could manipulate this cyberspace that's available in the real world, so I picked a career that I knew was right for me.

The Big Brother Is Watching You .

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