Few days before, Facebook rolled out new feature called “Places” app, that enables you to send updates about where they are right now to your Facebook friends. The basic idea behind this new feature is that it grabs the location data from services like Foursquare, yelp and some other services that helps you to update your location and social activities in real time with your friends.
This services is currently available for iPhone / iPod Facebook app and also works on HTML 5 and Geo Location support desktop browser. For a person like me, this service is really a disaster. I really don’t want to share my whereabouts with anyone.
And if you too prefer to keep your location private, or want more control over who can see your location and want to protect your privacy online, you can easily change Facebook Places settings quickly. At present, the default Facebook Places security options are set to “Friends Only”. Let’s see how to take more control over Facebook Places feature or completely opt out of the service altogether.
First step :
Log-in to your Facebook Account, click on “Account” menu in the top right corner. Drop down the menu and select “Privacy settings”.
Now click on “Custom” option and click on “Customize settings” link (next to the pencil symbol below current privacy settings)
Second Step :
After clicking “Customize settings”, a new page will open with “Things I Share” heading at the bottom of the section, you have to change two things now. First “Places I check in” which is by default set to visible by your friends. Drop-down the menu and select any option to limit it more or less.
Personally, I don’t want to share my location to everyone. So, I have selected “Only me” option which shows current location to yourself only, Clicking on “Customize” option will open a pop-up window. Select “Only Me” option to enable Facebook Places for yourself only.
Don’t forget to uncheck “Include me in the ‘People Here Now’ after I check in”. Disabling this option will now don’t show your location in a search for “people near you” service.
Third Step :
Now, if you don’t want your friends to check you into places, sharing your current location with anyone, find “Find can check me in to Places” under “Things I Share” heading. Drop-down the menu and set this option to “Disabled” if you don’t want your friends checking you in.
Last Step (More Privacy) :
The last step will help you to uncheck if you don’t want your friends apps grabbing your location information. Yeah, Facebook Places automatically sets your profile that share your location with your friend’s apps. If you don’t want this feature on, click on “Applications and Websites” that is bottom left option. Click “Edit Settings” and new page will open.
Now click on “Edit Setting” in front of “Info accessible through your friends” section.
You will see lots of boxes, find ”Places I’ve visited” (the last checkbox) and uncheck to opt-out from sharing your location grabbed by friends applications.
This is all, follow all those above steps and you are free from worries about online privacy. Now you can use your Facebook same like before.
Happy Facebooking !!