Facebook removing the option to hide your profile in searches

By on October 11, 2013, 12:15 PM
facebook, anonymous, timeline, search, privacy, privacy settings, privacy controls

If you’ve been on the fence about closing down your Facebook account over privacy concerns, now might be the time to take the plunge. That’s because the social network is removing an option that allowed members to prevent themselves from showing up in search results – a move they promised was coming nearly a year ago.

Last December, an option known as “Who can look up your Timeline by name?” was removed for people that weren’t already using it. Those that opted to use the privacy feature were allowed to continue to do so – until now. As the name suggests, it allowed people to control if they could be found via search and by whom.

Facebook noted in a blog post on the subject that the small percentage of people still using the setting will see reminders about it being removed in the coming weeks. Regardless of if you are using the setting or not, Facebook says the best way to control what people can find out about you is to choose who can see the individual things you share.

As a further reminder, those that share content publically will also see a notice in the coming weeks that those posts can be seen by anyone, even people they may not know.

It’s worth pointing out that the setting in question never prevented people from finding your post via alternate routes like clicking your name in a status update, a photo you’ve been tagged in or a Like on a mutual friend’s post.




User Comments: 23

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2 people like this | psycros psycros said:

Anyone still using the NSA and Madison Avenue's favorite spyware needs to delete their account while its still legal to do so.

hitech0101 said:

If you?ve been on the fence about closing down your Facebook account over privacy concerns, now might be the time to take the plunge.

I never understood how you want to be private and "social" at the same time, the moment you open a profile its for the rest of the world to see not that rest of the world cares any way.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

Because its impossible to be friends of all the people, including sick people....being social doesnt mean being spied..its like saying if you go to the outside on the street you have the right to be stolen...

spencer spencer said:

Yup, It's funny now that I think about it; years ago the nsa spying was a "conspiracy theory" but now everyone believes it. I think in the coming years ill be able to say so about many other things. I'm glad I deleted my account on FB long ago and I feel it will get worse in terms of privacy; the people on it and the actual site.

hitech0101 said:

Because its impossible to be friends of all the people, including sick people....being social doesnt mean being spied..its like saying if you go to the outside on the street you have the right to be stolen...

You can always reject friend requests you can control who you get it from but you can't control who "watches" you where, kind of like you can be at a party where there are 10 people you like maybe friends and the rest who have the ability to "watch" you. Privacy is a long shot nowadays. Even a longer one online.

t3chn0vamp said:

Shut down the Facebook Mark, you are drunk !!!

2 people like this | Vrmithrax Vrmithrax, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I can't believe anyone is surprised by the moves Facebook has made since going public. Once they launched an IPO, every FB user became a commodity for their corporation.

What really sucks about the situation is how prevalent and nearly unavoidable Facebook has become. Companies big and small have gotten lazy and given up on websites, opting instead for the viral social media fan pages instead to draw in new users and disseminate information about their products. I'm so sick of the "like us on Facebook to get more information" crapwagon. While the strategy works (often very well) and saves the companies money in the short run, it is leveraged against an independent entity that could, at any time, completely tick off their entire user base and see the whole thing crumble. Or it could be superceded by the newest shiniest cool thingymabob.com site flavor of the month. Just look at Myspace for an example of how fast the might can fall...

2 people like this | Guest said:

This is yet another reason why I never signed up for Facebook to begin with.

1 person liked this | Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

I guess this will just annoy some people who use FB. The app seems very popular but for the life of me I can't see why. I tried it a while back and wasn't impressed at all so I kinda forgot I had an account. Apart from my name & my dog's mugshot there's nothing much to see. The NSA's welcome to take a gander anytime they want if they haven't already.

Jeffery Jeffery said:

I love FB and it will not stop me going on it. Just make sure I don't put anything on I don't mind others seeing

tonylukac said:

You could always find them with the "site" keyword in google anyway.

LukeDJ LukeDJ said:

I can think of a lot of people who are not going to be happy with this. Teachers, for one; they can no longer be social on Facebook with their friends whilst stopping stupid kids from tormenting them.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I can think of a lot of people who are not going to be happy with this. Teachers, for one; they can no longer be social on Facebook with their friends whilst stopping stupid kids from tormenting them.
If the parents cared, that wouldn't last long. Don't blame the kids.

1 person liked this | LukeDJ LukeDJ said:

If the parents cared, that wouldn't last long. Don't blame the kids.

Well, I'm one of the kids, and by kids I mean high-school students. And I can tell you that trying to find teachers on Facebook is a common practice among students. It used to be "stupid teachers should make their accounts undefinable" however that isn't even an option for them anymore, which was my point.

tipstir tipstir, TS Ambassador, said:

You can't hide no more on face book, I just use it for the two games I play. Sure friends are on there to chat with but still tried to keep my account private as I want it but face tries to push ads in my face. I block all the side ads and everything else. Just have a nice GUI without all the nonsense from face book social lifestyle.

2 people like this | JC713 JC713 said:

Eh FB is just getting creepier and creepier. I am contemplating shutting down my account.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

How to put your name on web?!! how stupid to be?!

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

Most of these problems can be solved by using a throw-away email address and your fake name.

wiyosaya said:

I've never had a facebook account, and I never will. As I see it, facebook is not about being social, it is about marketing. There is life without a facebook account.

wizardB wizardB said:

Facebook has always been creepy,if you have an account shut it down now that is the only way to show corporations like this that you control their bottom line(the only thing that matters to them)you don't need 8000 online friends.

Guest said:

"Most of these problems can be solved by using a throw-away email address"

Until your account has issues or gets hacked. Then you can kiss it goodbye

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

"Most of these problems can be solved by using a throw-away email address"

Until your account has issues or gets hacked. Then you can kiss it goodbye

Well, my point was:

Fake name - can't trace it to you, unless you look at friend list of people.

Throw-away email - can't search via your email address which appears on Steam/Gmail/LinkedIn/everywhere-else.

PatrickLT PatrickLT said:

It's very easy to be private on a social network. The point of the setting is so random twats don't browse your profile, only people on your friends list can

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