Whether it’s a beautiful sunset photo from your holiday or checking-in at your favourite football game, social media is a great way to let your friends and family know what you’re up to.
But to make sure it stays great, it is important to make sure you are sharing things in the way you want and with the right group of friends or family to protect your online identity.
“It's important to Facebook that people using our service understand the many ways you can control who sees the information you choose to share," says Mia Garlick, Head of Policy, Facebook New Zealand.
"If you experience unpleasant surprises when sharing on Facebook, that's bad for you and bad for us."
With Privacy Awareness Week beginning in New Zealand on Sunday May 4, Facebook has provided some tips below to help Kiwis manage their privacy settings and keep unwanted people out of their Facebook business.
1. Choose your audience:
Sometimes you might want to let everyone know that you just read that really thoughtful opinion piece but sometimes you just want to share a post or photo with your friends.
On Facebook, you can choose who you want to see each thing you post by using the audience selector that appears when you are posting content.
Toggle between public and friends, or another audience choice, to control who sees each thing you post.
2. If they aren't a friend, 'unfriend' or 'unfollow':
If there is someone who you no longer want to share stuff with you can unfriend them by selecting the gear icon in the upper right hand corner of the person’s timeline and click ‘Unfriend’.
Or if that seems too drastic, you can ‘unfollow’ them so that you stop seeing their updates when you log in to Facebook, and mark them as an acquaintance and then share with “friends except acquaintences.”
But don’t worry, they won’t receive a notification that you have done this! If there is someone you really don’t feel comfortable with you can also ‘Block’ other people. This not only unfriends the person but also means they can’t talk to you in any way or see anything on your timeline.
3. Know how to tag and untag:
Adding a “tag” creates a link that people can follow to learn more about a person, place or event. Tagging can be really useful – it can point to your friends or anyone else on Facebook and let people know when they're in photos or other things you share.
So it’s important you know what tagging does and what controls you have. You can choose to review content that you’re tagged in before it appears on your Timeline and you can choose to hide content that you are tagged in from your timeline or remove a tag so that it doesn’t appear.
4. Your timelines is your story:
Your timeline represents who you are, so you control what appears on it. You can even update your privacy settings to review things you're tagged in before they go on your timeline.
Use your Activity Log to review individual things you’ve already shared. From Activity Log, you can delete things you may not want to appear on Facebook anymore, you can untag photos and you can change the privacy of past posts.
5. Be empowered:
If you have a burning question about your information on Facebook visit https://www.facebook.com/about/privacy/your-info.
If you aren’t quite sure how ads work on Facebook, read this explanation: https://www.facebook.com/about/ads/. The Facebook Help Center also has answers to pretty much any question you are likely to have about how things work on Facebook: www.facebook.com/help