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Update: Your Facebook Profile Is No Longer Private from Search

by Jane Susskind, published
In a not-so-surprising move for a company recently sued for using peoples images in paid advertisements without permission, Facebook announced late last week that they will now be eroding even more of our privacy rights online.

Following through on an announcement they made in December of 2012, Facebook will be removing the option to keep your profile private from public search.

The old privacy setting was called “Who can look up your timeline by name?” and allowed users to hide their Timelines from showing up in Facebook search, giving users the option of only appearing to friends, or friends of friends.

"People told us that they found it confusing when they tried looking for someone who they knew personally and couldn't find them in search results," Facebook's Chief Privacy Officer Michael Richter said in a statement.

Now, all profiles are available to all users. All you have to do is search.

In January, Facebook released Graph search, a function designed to allow users to tap into the vast amount of user information to search for specific results among friends based on specific criteria. to read more. In September, Facebook announced it will be updating two key documents governing online privacy on the site: the Data Use Policy and Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.

But at what cost to our privacy? Click

"What this means is that Facebook can gather information about you not only based on information that you choose to share, but by scanning posts that your friends choose to share on the network. Facebook is essentially building the capacity to build an internal profile of any given user — without their consent."

to learn how to edit your settings. "Knowing the value of their database, Facebook recently partnered with Datalogix, "a company that collects purchasing data from around 70 million U.S. households drawn from loyalty cards and other sources."


The partnership offers companies targeted ads in mobile apps or on mobile websites based on what is known about that user by Facebook. In conjunction, the companies can now track user tendencies in purchasing items advertised to them on Facebook.

The partnership has raised concern among privacy advocates, who worry the new practice violates the Federal Trade Commission regulations."

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