Once again Facebook Inc. got sued for invading user privacy. This time a group of people sued Facebook for tracking its users even after logging out of Facebook.com. Generally when a user logs out of a website, that website automatically deletes it’s tracking cookies. but what Facebook was doing is to modify those tracking cookies rather than deleting them so that it can still track the users online.
This privacy flaw was claimed by an Australian blogger Nik Cubrilovic after which public interest groups asked US Federal Trade Commission to investigate the way Facebook tracks its user. Also they asked the commission to look into the new Facebook’s Ticker and Timeline features and check if these features increased the risk of privacy of a user’s personal information as most of the content is easily visible to friends of friends.
Even the Facebook’s privacy and account settings isn’t simple and it’s not easy to keep profile information protected from friends of friends and everyone else except your friends. If you’re confused about privacy settings of your Facebook profile then read Best privacy settings for your New Facebook profile and keep you personal stuff protected.
After the launch of Facebook subscription button and Profile review option, Facebook completely changed its privacy settings again. And as expected these features are so complicated for a normal user. Also some of the privacy features are not given under privacy settings link. You have to edit your profile to change your content’s visibility. But don’t worry if you want to keep your content on Facebook protected, we will tell you how you can change your profile settings to get a good privacy for your content.
Best privacy settings for your Facebook profile:
First of all open the Privacy Settings page using the link given below,
Now for a particular option, use the following settings.
Control Your Default Privacy: Select ‘Custom’ for this option, after clicking on ‘Custom’ you will see ‘Custom Privacy’ options. Select ‘Friends’ for ‘Make this visible to’. Also select ‘Restricted’ for ‘Hide this from’ as shown below.
Please note that here Restricted list is a smart list by Facebook where you can add those people with which you want to hide your profile’s content. To add someone to your Restricted List read this article.
How you connect: Click ‘Edit Settings’ for this option and do the following changes. Here we have selected ‘Custom’ for ‘Who can see Wall posts by others on your profile?’ which means the Wall posts are visible to friends only except for those who are in ‘Restricted list’.
How Tags Work: Do the following changes. You can Switch On Tag and Profile reviews if you want people to ask for your permission before tagging you in a photo. Read more about Tag and Profile review here.
That’s it; you don’t need to save these settings as Facebook saves it instantly. By using these settings you can have decent privacy settings with user interaction and privacy of your content simultaneously. Profiles with everything locked in it looks too boring so it’s better to use this kind of settings.
If you like uploading your photos to online photo sharing websites just because they are safe and no one can save protected images from it then think before you upload. These websites are not 100% safe and anyone can save pictures from it as there are thousand ways to do that. Let’s take an example of one of the most famous photo sharing website Flickr by Yahoo. You have an option of disabling downloads of photos you upload. If you enable this no one can save your photo and it will show “The owner has disabled downloading of their photos” with that photo. Let’s see how you can save such photos.
How to save images from Flickr:
Firstly open the image you want to save and go to Actions>>View all Sizes, to view the image in actual size.
Now select the largest size. That largest size is the actual size of that photo.
Now simply press Ctrl+S to save the page and save it to your desktop or any other desired location. You can also save the link by clicking on ‘File’ on the ‘Menu Bar’ and click ‘Save Link as’.
This will save that page (link) and a Folder with that which contains all the images on that page. Open this folder and you will find the desired image in that folder.
That’s it; you can find your image in this folder, copy and paste it to anywhere else. You can also save an image by viewing Page Source (by pressing Ctrl+U) of the same page that we saved earlier. View page source and find the link of that image there. Click on that link and save the image.
[Image taken from Flickr belongs to juliusfrumble. All rights reserved.]
Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) introduced something unusual in order to control spam SMSes and calls you got from different telemarketing firms. Rather than limiting these firms SMS limits they put a limit to every cellular user in India that no one can send more than 100 SMS per day for prepaid users and 3000 per month for postpaid users.
Well obviously TRAI is trying to do something good because these SMSes are so annoying but their way of spam control is not good at all. 100 SMS per day is nothing for a normal user specially when you have so many SMS cards in the market with more than 20,000 free SMSes per day. Even I personally send 200 to 300 SMSes per day as these messages are a good and important way of communicating and a part of life now. You can’t talk on phone every time and everywhere so it’s better to inform somebody something by Texting.
Also Do Not Disturb (DND) policy will be more strict now and you won’t receive unwanted calls and SMSes once registered for DND service. To register yourself to DND service use any of the following methods:
This is a good initiative by TRAI but I would prefer to receive 1-2 spam SMS everyday rather than this limit of 100 SMSes per day. People will start using instant messaging services like BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) and Whatsapp more if this limit continues.
What do you think about this SMS limit? Tell us your views in the comment section below.
Facebook passwords are not ‘completely’ case sensitive. You actually have 3 passwords for your Facebook account, including the normal password with which you login.
So what are those other two passwords, apart from the one you know?
Your actual Facebook password with case reversed.
Your actual Facebook password with first letter capitalized, this is only available for mobile devices, though.
For example, if your password is “fAcEbOoK’, then “FaCeBoOk” (case reversed) serves as an alternative password.
This also means that if your password is completely in lower case, then you can login to your Facebook account even with Caps Lock on.
If you’re logging into Facebook from a mobile, then if the first letter gets capitalized by mistake, still you can login with no problem.
This is not a bug in Facebook, they intentionally designed in this way. This is not even a security loophole as it’s the same password, what has changed is just the capitalization, so it will take the same number of brute force attacks to crack it.
I have never been very comfortable with Facebook’s privacy options. The changes to privacy settings and usually the lack of control on people tagging me to any photo has me worried. Yes, I still use Facebook, but not because I like it but because I have all my friends there.
The most irritating feature of Facebook has been friends tagging you. When someone tags you in a post, it actually shows up on Wall. The problem is we cannot control which friend can tag us.
The new feature will allow people to approve any post or photo when a friends tags them.
This change is not really radical and should have been part of Facebook over a year ago. Unfortunately it probably took the threat of Google+, for Facebook to stop taking its users for granted and actually make things easier.
Do not worry if you do not see this feature on your Facebook account. It will be rolled out gradually for all users.
Most of the time we click on Facebook applications and install them which seems very interesting in the beginning but irritates a lot after some time due to useless notifications. This post will tell you how to block these unwanted Facebook applications permanently. You can also remove these applications but you will still receive notifications even after removing them so it’s better to block them permanently. For your information this block is only known as “permanent block” however you can unblock them anytime you want.
How to block an app on Facebook?
Click on “Account” on the top right side of your Facebook profile page and select “Account settings” from the drop down list.
Now click on “Applications” option on the left hand side of page. This will open the list of all apps installed on your profile.
(click to enlarge)
Now select the application from the list you want to remove or block and click edit for that. After that click on the application’s name that will open the main page for that app.
Clicking the name will redirect you to the main page of that application. On the bottom left side of that page you will see few links like “Add to My Page“, “Add to My Page’s Favorites”, “Subscribe via RSS” e.t.c. There you will find the required “Block app” and “Remove app” link. Use these links respectively to Block or Remove that app.
Drop a comment below if you’re stuck somewhere. Do check FbKnol for more tutorials 🙂
Privacy has been major concern from internet users lately, no one wants to be tracked by companies nor they want to get their E-mail address sold. If you’re looking for some Privacy tips which can make your online life a bit more private, then you’re on the right page. Read on!
This is not a small post, so to keep it organized I broke the post into 4 parts which you can access from the links below.
This section contains tips regarding how to deal with E-mail spam, sharing your E-mail address securely and more.
Use A Disposable Email Address
I sign up for a lot of sites daily and some times I may not be ready to sign up using my default email address as I’m not interested to receive emails from the site. A disposable email address is a temporary Email address which auto destroys itself after a specific period of time.
There are many services which provide disposable email addresses, 10MinuteMail is one of them and works perfectly.
If you have come across a site which looks spammy and if you’re curious to know if they intrude your privacy, this trick will be handy for you. This works only in Gmail.
In Gmail, [email protected], [email protected], You+remail.com etc are all the same, you can insert the ‘+’ anywhere in your email address. So, if you’re signing up for a site, enter your email address as [email protected] and the next time you get ‘free offer/spam’ emails, just check if the mail is sent to [email protected], if that’s true then the site (for which you’ve signed up) has sold your email! Definitely!
This part contains tips regarding how to update browser plug-ins, dealing with saved passwords and private browsing.
Keep your Browser plug-ins and add-ons up to date
Browser plug-ins especially Flash and Shockwave plug-ins (and even Java) are vulnerable, so you should keep them up to date. For this task you may use update checkers, which are plenty for Windows.
You can also do this manually. If you’re on Chrome, go to chrome://plugins/ and Chrome will alert you (with download links) if there are any outdated plug-ins.
Firefox users can simply head on to Plugins Check page and download the latest plugins.
Never save passwords in the browser itself
Modern browsers are not really modern in privacy, there are many vulnerabilities and it is suggested to not save passwords in the browser itself. Instead you can use a password manager like LastPass (saves passwords in the cloud) or Keepass (saves passwords locally). If you use more than one browser, then you can use them to sync your passwords too.
Private browsing is a browsing mode which is present in all the modern browsers, during private mode no cookies,cache or form data will be stored. This doesn’t mean that your ISP cannot track you! It’s just that no traces will be left after you’ve done private browsing.
To switch to private browsing (or incognito mode) in Chrome, press Ctrl+Shift+N. In Firefox, click on menu and select Start Private Browsing.
Hide your IP address
This is not something new, but beginners can find it useful. An IP address can be used to track anyone’s geographical location, if you do some cyber crime, the police will contact your ISP and get your IP address and thus they can track you.
You can simply use a web proxy for hiding your IP address, Proxy.org has a list of working web proxies. If you’re looking for some advanced proxy management tool, then checkout Proxy Switchy (for Chrome) and FoxyProxy (for Firefox).
UPDATE: As commentator Outspoken suggested DBAN (Darik’s Boot and Nuke) is the best drive wiper available till date. Unlike other wipers it boots via CD or USB and overwrites all the files/free space so that they can be unrecoverable. Just get the .iso file from the site, burn it to a disk and you can use it.
Turn off search visibility in your Google+ account
While you can’t do this on Twitter, it’s possible on Google+. Head on to your profile and under editing mode, click on search visibility and untick it.
Make your Tweets exclusive
Twitter is public and if you want to convey a personal message, you can always use the Direct Message option. But if you’re on Twitter to hang out with your family friends then you can make your tweets exclusive.
In the settings, tick the box under Tweet Privacy and enter your password. From now, only people whom you’ve approved will be able see the tweets. Also note that, even though you’ve enabled Tweet Privacy, your previous tweets can be visible in some places.
Delete location history in Twitter
Twitter is public, so it’s better to switch the location tracker off. If you’ve tweeted with location tracker on, you can always remove the location information from the settings.
Just click on that link and your location history will be deleted within a few minutes (depends on how often you used it).
Leave Facebook, Try Google+ !
Google+ is a lot better than Facebook when it comes to privacy. There is no annoying application spam, you won’t get tagged in irrelevant photos nor you friend requests from people you don’t know. That’s all.
Contains uncategorized tips like using like blocking ad networks from tracking you, removing your presence from the web and more.
Remove yourself from people and phone directories
Remove EXIF data from your photos
If you share your personal photographs on social networks, then EXIF data can be your real privacy loophole. EXIF(Exchangeable image file format) data is the information (geolocation, camera data and camera settings) stored in every digital image.
QuickFix is a nice tool which can remove EXIF data from digital images with a click. All you need to do is, drop the image in the program and click on QuickFix Metadata and you’re done. It won’t overwrite the original photo, instead it will create a new one.
HTTPS (Hyper text transfer protocol secured) is mainly used by banking sites as it provides better security while browsing. All the information that is transferred from your browser to the site’s server is encrypted, so a hacker need to break it to access the information which is quite tedious.
Turning on HTTPS in Facebook
By default, Facebook offers HTTP connection but you can enable HTTPS from the settings.
Just check “Always use HTTPS” in settings and you’re done.
Go to Mail settings, under General tab, select Always use HTTPS.
Using Firefox? Oh, you’re lucky. There’s a neat add-on called HTTPS Everywhere which automatically switches your connection to HTTPS (if the site offers it). Currently it supports a large list of over 1000 sites. Unfortunately, there’s no alternative for Chrome users, they need to manually enable HTTPS in the respective sites.
Ad agencies store cookies track you all over the web, they do this for ad personalization, i.e. the ads shown to you will be more relevant. But if you don’t like to get tracked, there’s a way to stop them.
If you’re using Chrome, you can install Keep My Opt-Outs (by Google) which will completely remove ad personalization and if you’re so curious to know the ad networks that are tracking you, get Ghostery. Firefox don’t need to install any add-on for this, as you can simply turn off ad personalization from the settings. Collusion is a handy tool for Firefox users to know who’s tracking.
Remove objectionable images from Google Streetview
Google Streetview which is intended to roll out in Bangalore has been banned in many countries like UK as it was taking pictures of some private places. If you’ve seen pictures of your house or any kind of objectionable element on Streetview, you can report it.
Click on “Report a problem” on the bottom of the map, then fill the form and submit it.
Never use your ISP’s search engine
ISPs generally offer their search engine as the default one, for example if you subscribe to Sify Broadband (Indian ISP), you get search.sify.com as the default search engine. It’s always better to change it to something reliable, preferably Google SSL.
That’s all. If you know some worth privacy tips, do share them.
The rumors that your Phone contacts are visible to everyone on Facebook are not true, claimed Facebook on Thrusday (August 11th 2011). According to these rumors all the Facebook friend’s contact numbers in contact list of your phone was set visible to everyone on Facebook by Facebook officials but Facebook denied it.
The actual thing is that these numbers are not visible to everyone or even your frineds on Facebook. These numbers are only visible to you and are used for ease of access so that you can directly call a facebook friend from your phone just by clicking it. To enhance this thing Facebook also launched a new feature i.e “Request your Friend’s phone number” which’s available on platform’s like Facebook for BlackBerry and iPhone.
How to access your Facebook’s contact list?
To access your Facebook contact list open your Facebook homepage from your PC browser. Now click “Account” on the top right of the page and select “Edit Friends” from the drop down list.
Now on the left sidebar, third option will be “Contacts”. Click on that to access your Facebook phonebook and see your Facebook friend’s contact information.
This post is to inform you guys that Facebook events like this one “The first 100000 participants Will Get cool Facebook iphone Free” and many others are fake. Facebook users are blindly following the instructions given on such events to get a free gift which they are never going to get. Following these instructions results into spamming or even hacking of your account so beware of them.
Yesterday I got an invitation of this iPhone event and then one after another my friends started inviting me and it spread like a fire. But nobody thought that why they will give a free iPhone to a million Facebook users? The answer is that they are not giving it to anyone, they are just increasing fan count for their page.
There are some other events as well like first million people will get free pair of shoes, click like to get a free Tee-Shirt e.t.c, all are fake. Only events created by an official Facebook page of a brand are genuine. So next time do not invite your friends or click “Attending” to useless events. This might harm your privacy or misuse your information in other ways.
Share this post and inform your friends as well to protect them.