Saturday, August 31, 2013

Maximum Privacy on Facebook

Don't board up your digital homes on Google or Facebook! Even though Professor Tim Wu of Columbia Law School told that consumers had a "responsibility" to leave social networks found out to be collaborating secretly with intelligence services such as the US National Security Agency: that's a little bit over the top, and I have more sensible solutions.

I've been warning you about computers and privacy for a long time. Here is what I recommend.

(1) Do what I do -  stay OFF THE "CLOUD" - you need to disconnect from the idea of using files and softwares that are stored somewhere on the internet. All of your important files and useful programs should be on your laptop or pc in NON-updatable versions or forms - if you can turn off "automatic updates" for any and all programs you may have, you will be better off.

(2) Turn the internet 'on' and 'off' - learn to work offline as much as possible. The shorter the time you are on the net, the better for your own safety and security.

(3) Lower your profiles on Google and Facebook. Do not share or post any controversial, intimate or private information or photographs you wouldn't want teachers, parents, employers or officials to see.

Here's a screenshot of how some of your facebook settings should appear... if they don't, fix 'em... NOW!

I've been Google Plus for awhile now, but admit I treat it the way I did twitter when I first signed up: not much in the way of participation or interaction from me. I can't say if it will always be that way. I can tell you that I will read and research every bit of new advice that surfaces regarding privacy and G+.

Wired published a nifty tutorial about how to control which apps your facebook friends can see that you use, as well as what information your friends can access about you through their apps.

Wired's BEST chunk of facebook advice ::: "Most of us don’t want strangers peering through our Facebook history. So for the next setting, unless you’re 100 percent confident your Facebook profile is squeaky clean, switch “Do you want other search engines to link to your timeline?” to OFF."

In his interview with, Wu describes several historical examples of technologies having been used as tools of oppression or societal control, such as enforced propaganda radio broadcasts by the Nazi regime. He also comments that he feels web users ought to have a "visceral" sense of ownership over their online data. He's almost right. Users should only allow data online that MUST be there. Nothing more. No pictures of the wild party, no nonsense...

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