Navigating Facebook's new privacy settings

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The I-Team has information on how to navigate Facebook's newly announced privacy settings and other steps you can take to protect your privacy. (WLS)

The I-Team has information on how to navigate Facebook's newly announced privacy settings and other steps you can take to protect your privacy.

Facebook has been under fire since last week when it was revealed that data used by Cambridge Analytica, an analytics firm, had been accessed without consent.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he's "been working to understand exactly what happened and how to make sure this doesn't happen again" in reference to the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Facebook said it's listening to complaints from users who said that privacy settings and other tools are too hard to find. Now there's a plan to streamline and condense several pages of settings into three consolidated locations to lessen the confusion.

"I'm not really sure how to get there," said April Taylor, Facebook user. "Like, I have to go through a lot of steps to find out where my privacy settings are."

It can be maddening for some, navigating page after page to control your private information on Facebook.

"It's kind of confusing with all the buttons and extra steps to get there," Taylor said.

Others disagree, and say the current settings are a breeze.

"I can probably do it pretty quickly right now. I think it's pretty standard for the most part and easy to access," said Guy DiBalsamo, Facebook user.

Nevertheless, Facebook announced Wednesday it's changing how you can navigate and control your privacy. That includes a new simple menu where you can quickly see where to go for personal information and security, and a new "privacy shortcuts" page. Another page will have all your information, condensed; you can control your past comments, posts, photos, videos and profile information.

The new privacy shortcuts should roll out in the next couple weeks, but right now you have to go through about 20 different pages to manage your settings. There are some things you can do right now on your Facebook page to protect your personal information.

Not everybody has to see your work history, places you loved, or your family; you can leave all of that out. You can also manage your phone number by hiding the phone number you give to Facebook so others don't see it. You can do the same thing with your birthdate or part of your birthdate.

Facebook also said it's making it easier to download data you've shared so you can save a secured copy of photos, contacts and posts to another service.

The changes do not include restrictions on how new information is collected, but Facebook said it will also update its policy to better explain what data is collected and how they use it.

The best thing you can do, according to experts, is limit what you put on social media altogether.
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