Facebook Security Settings Explained

Today I saw a post on :

Facebook has changed and said nothing (again). Take a look at your URL (top box on your screen.) If you see “http” or just “www” instead of “https” you DO NOT have a secure session & can be hacked. Go to Account Settings – Click on the left top corner – click Edit, Check box (secure browsing), click Save. FB has automatically set it on the non-secure setting! Do everyone a huge favor, copy & re-post.

While I agree it sucks that Facebook might not have said anything, the security settings of Facebook is definitely an important part of your Facebook experience. Knowing what is under the hood might help you determine why you should enable it.

Let’s take a look at all these settings and answer the question – Should I enable?

Facebook Security Interface

Facebook Security Interface

Secure Browsing on Facebook

This is the big question. Should you use a secure connection, or a regular http (non-secure) connection. Well let’s de-myth the big issue.

When you log into Facebook, it’s always on a secure connection. If you “Authorize an App”, that is also on a secure connection.

This is asking you if you want a secure connection for everything you do on Facebook. If you turn this option on, no matter what you do in Facebook, you are sending that information securely. Including updates like “My cat is looking at me” or “I’m getting a Venti Iced Frappe Mocha Carmella chocolate with whipped cream…”

You cannot get a secure connection for regular browsing when on a Mobile device.

Should you turn this on? If you work from seedy coffee shops and are in “high risk” areas (, Tokyo, , etc.), then I would say “Yes”. If you have your profile privatized because people are stalking you like you were Lady Gaga, then turn it on. If you are in high communication with the President of the United States of America, then turn this on.

Otherwise, you are taking up more resource for an unnecessary need.  Your Facebook experience will be slower and more frustrating. Leave it off.

Facebook Login Notifications

This is a setting that will let you know when and where you log in. Turn this on if you log into other people’s computers. Turn this on if you give out your passwords to other people (like a now-ex boyfriend/girlfriend). All this will do is send you notification when that happens. If you don’t mind the extra email, then turn it on.

If you ever have a question about your profile (like some post shows up unexpectedly), then turn the notification on.

Login Approvals – Recognized Devices

If Facebook sees you logging into a new computer or mobile device, it can ask you to re-verify your credentials. If you are on a mobile device, it will send a security code to the registered mobile number. Once you receive that code, enter it in.

You will then approve the device and it will show up on recognized devices. Keep in mind that this process can get a bit tedious if you use other secure browsing methods (like Chrome and their Incognito window). Still, it will prevent other people from trying to login on their computer.

Here are some good Facebook Reading suggestions

Active Sessions

Simply put – You see if there is more than one instance logged in. If you are in Santa Clara and you see someone in Dallas is logged in, it’s time to change some passwords.

Deactivate Account

This is the new location for you to opt-out of Facebook.

How to Change Your Password in Facebook

  1. Choose “General” in the Account Settings
  2. Select “Edit” where it says “Password”
  3. Enter in your current password, then enter in a new password. The more complex the better. Put in 1-3 numbers or special characters. Example (but never use this one): All1sW3ll!

Hopefully that will clear up some confusion about the security center. If you have any questions, feel free to tweet me @Geekazine. You can also read more from the Facebook opt-in features.

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