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Published: 03/04/18 by Becky Ashton

How can you keep your Facebook data private?

The #DeleteFacebook campaign has been gathering pace over the last week, as the pressure continues to grow on CEO Mark Zuckerberg and the British research firm Cambridge Analytica.

The data of millions of users has been exploited by the British firm on behalf of political clients but surely it was only ever a matter of time before we were all used and abused by the highest bidders?

After all, Facebook is free to use and data is now the most valuable commodity on the market.

Data surpassed oil in 2017 as the most valuable resource and as the five most valuable companies in the world – Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft all thrive on data and in most cases is key to their success.

Shockingly Google holds 74% of the market when it comes to search data, while there are 2.13 billion monthly active users on Facebook, with five new profiles still being created every second – so it’s unlikely #DeleteFacebook will have little impact.

If you run a business page, deleting your personal account is not an option either and the reality is the only person who will lose out if you delete those is your business.

What you should do though is be aware of what information Facebook actually has on you and it might come as a shock.

Fortunately, this is easy to find out because Facebook allows you to download all your data but be prepared because it quite literally is your full life story.

As well as your personal call records and text messages, it will also reveal the location of every single login, since you set up your Facebook account.

To find out all the data kept on you just follow these easy steps:

Go to settings
Click on download a copy of your Facebook data at the bottom of your screen
Click start my archive – you will need to enter your password and then your download will begin.
You will receive an email with a folder containing all of your data – which includes everything you have shared to the site as well as all data that has been collected from you.

If we are to learn anything from this latest Facebook scandal it’s that we should all be more aware of what data is kept on us and how we can stop any more being harvested.

The easiest way is to put a block on third party advertisers being able to monitor your web usage and this applies to both your web browser and Facebook account.

In your Facebook settings you just need to go into settings, then into privacy and then advertising and then limit ad tracking.

When it comes to your web browser you can you can also stop your usage being tracked by simply changing your privacy settings to Do Not Track.

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