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Facebook Says They “May” Collect Data From Your Calls and Texts. Turn It Off

3 Facebook Settings You Need To Review TODAY
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There’s been a lot of noise over the past few weeks about Facebook, the Russians, and YOUR personal privacy. {Read up HERE}

If you’re sticking around, it’s time for a little house cleaning.

Let’s start with Facebook’s access to your calls, texts, and contacts:

Chances are that when you set up Facebook Messenger you may have clicked a button that would allow you to “text anyone in your phone”. By activating that feature, you gave access to Facebook to “continuously upload info about your contacts like phone numbers and nicknames, and your call and text history”. (via Facebook Newsroom)

Facebook defended itself by explaining that:

> “People have to expressly agree to use” the opt-in feature for importing their contacts on Messenger or Facebook Lite to allow Facebook to collect the cell phone data, but Sunday’s statement is the first time the social media company actually spelled out that practice in clear terms for users. (via Time Magazine)

Here’s how to turn it off in Facebook Messenger:


  1. From Home, tap your profile picture in the top right corner
  2. Tap People
  3. Synced Contacts to turn this setting on or off

iPhone or iPad:

  1. From Home, tap your profile picture in the top left corner
  2. Tap People
  3. Tap Synced Contacts to turn this setting on or off

Time To Review The Apps That Have Access To Your Facebook Profile (And Your Friends!)

Ever taken a quiz to find out which Disney Princess you are? (Or any other crazy personality test etc.)

Here’s where you can see all of those Apps and Services that you may have inadvertently opened the door to!

Go to your personal profile page on Facebook:

  1. Click on the dropdown menu in the upper right hand corner of your page
  2. Click on Settings
  3. Click on Apps
  4. Review the list of apps and websites you’ve given access to your Facebook profile.
  5. To see what access each app has or to edit the settings on a specific app click on the light grey pencil icon to the right of the app
  6. To delete apps or revoke access tap or click on the light grey “x” to the right of the app
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Next Up: Let’s Look At Your “Ads” Settings

Why does this one matter? Here’s where Facebook shows you SOME of the data they’ve tied to you and how they target ads to you.

  1. Click on the dropdown menu in the upper right hand corner of your personal profile page
  2. Click on Settings
  3. Click on Ads

You’ll see:

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Click on each section. See how Facebook has been targeting and tracking you so far. The data they had tied to my personal profile was highly inaccurate. They had tied grocery stores to me outside of my state, retail stores that I would never shop at, and interests that were completely off base (listing interests like “Gambling” and “Alcohol” for the Mormon girl who’s never had a drink).

Review each section and clean it up. You can delete the information they have tied to you, hide ad topics, and limit how your ads are served to you.

Big surprise? I deleted most everything and limited access as much as possible. You may not mind the data that Facebook has tied to you and how they are serving your ads — but you’d still benefit by doing a good review of this page and the info they have stored there.

What Next?

If you want to dig a little deeper, review your personal “About Page” and the details you’ve listed there. Take a look at the places you’ve “Checked In” on Facebook. Review all of the Movies, TV Shows, Books, Likes, Events You’ve Attended etc. Save that one for an afternoon when you’ve got time to kill!

This is not an exhaustive list of all the ways that Facebook manipulates your experience within the platform. We haven’t even touched on how it’s built to be addictive, how studies show that it’s not unhappy people that are using social media but that it’s social media that’s MAKING PEOPLE UNHAPPY, and all the ways we’ve given our privacy away to these platforms.

We’re working on some great resources for families that we’ll be releasing in the coming months. In the meantime, leave us a comment and tell us what we’ve missed and how you are “cleaning house” when it comes to technology.


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