Facebook Just Updated Its Privacy Settings & Here’s What That Means For You

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On Mar. 28, Facebook announced some big, new changes to its platform. This update isn't particularly flashy — there are no snazzy new features, or cool new video capabilities to speak of — but that doesn't make it any less important. After all, aren't the less flashy updates the ones that tend to be most meaningful? Facebook's newest update is focused on security, specifically settings relating to users' privacy. So, what are Facebook's new privacy settings? In short, they should make users feel safer sharing information about themselves with the social network, as well as give users more control over what exactly they share.

"We've heard loud and clear that privacy settings and other important tools are too hard to find and that we must do more to keep people informed," Facebook VP and chief privacy officer Erin Egan, and VP and deputy general counsel Ashlie Beringer said in a statement. "We're taking additional steps in the coming weeks to put people more in control of their privacy."

To this end, the Facebook team has implemented several key changes to the platform's privacy and security functions. Here are all of the details on these updates, and how they're being set up to keep you and your information safer.

Streamlined Security Information

According to the statement from Facebook, a prevailing concern among the social media platform's user base has long been the challenges associated with actually accessing privacy controls. So now, within the mobile Facebook app, privacy settings will be available for adjustments in a single screen; the former design required users to jump between multiple menus in order to tweak their security controls. As you can see in the screenshot below, privacy settings will now look and feel more comprehensive and organized.

Privacy Shortcuts Menu

Within the new and improved privacy shortcuts menu, users will have easy access to their personal settings. From this shortcuts menu, you'll be able to add additional layers of account protection — like two-factor authentication — drill down to the specific information and posts you've shared on your account and more clearly note what should be public, manage ad preferences, and take control of who can see what parts of your profile.

Tools To Manage Your Data

Facebook is working to give control to users who want to ensure that data they've shared in the past or present isn't being used by the platform in ways they wouldn't necessarily want it to be used. How does this work? Facebook is introducing Access Your Information, a secure way for people to review posts, reactions, comments, and searches from their history and to delete (like, fully delete) them if they'd like. Moving forward, Facebookers are also able to download their data from the social media network and move it to another device. What kind of data, you ask? We're talkin' uploaded photos, contacts, timeline posts, and more. In other words, you'll be able to grab all of that content from your FB account and move it elsewhere, if you want!

Clearer Communication

Facebook has also laid out a plan for the future! In their statement, the team details their intention to open up communication about how user data is to be collected and used in the future. Soon, updates to the FB data policy and terms of service will be proposed, all of which will be more clearly spelled out to fans of the site. "These updates are about transparency — not about gaining new rights to collect, use, or share data," the statement noted.

Thanks to these new privacy settings, it seems like a pretty safe (see what I did there?) bet that Facebook will continue to improve the way users interact with the platform in the future.