In April 2014 Facebook launched a new tool to help users check their privacy settings. Using a blue cartoon dinosaur, dubbed ‘Zuckersaurus-Rex’, otherwise known as the ‘privacy dinosaur’, the social networking company offered a warning to a small number of users before they posted anything publicly.
Five months on and Facebook yesterday began rolling the tool out to the more than 1.2 billion people who are signed up to its service.
If you haven’t received a dino-popup yet then you can either wait for it to appear in the next few days or you can click on the padlock icon in the top right corner of your Facebook page and choose Privacy Checkup. It is not yet available in the mobile version of Facebook, so you’ll need to access it via your desktop to find it.
Running the tool is pretty simple as you can see from Facebook’s own video below:
The three-step process begins by asking who you would like to share your next post with from a choice of your friends only, everyone, or more custom options.
The second stage of the checkup looks at the apps you’ve logged into with Facebook. You can scroll through each of the apps and choose who can see that you use them, who can view anything that they may post or even delete apps that are no longer required.
Step 3 allows you to review your profile on Facebook and decide whether details such as your email address, birthday or location should be viewable by everyone on Facebook, your friends only, just you, or a custom set of people you specify.
Once complete, simply click on Close to end the Facebook Privacy Checkup.
So why is Facebook suddenly pushing privacy controls for its users?
The company has a chequered history where privacy is concerned. Perhaps in the wake of the Snowden revelations, the upcoming class action lawsuit instigated by Max Schrems and the fallout over its emotion experiment, the company is making some changes.
Around the time the privacy dinosaur first appeared, Facebook switched the default post setting from “public” to “friends” for new users. And, in April, more changes were revealed at the F8 conference – the most notable of which was the ability for users to login anonymously to third party apps.
Despite the widespread introduction of the Privacy Checker, some users may still feel a little overwhelmed by the large number of security options the social giant has to offer.
Fret not – we have prepared our own tips to help you make your Facebook account safer!
7 comments on “Review your settings with Facebook’s new privacy checkup tool”
I did a complete review of all my facebook privacy setting. Then I promptly stopped using the service. For me, facebook has jumped the shark.
FB security is a joke. They allow stalking and harassment and do nothing!
Helpful little Privacy note, but I’d like to know how to totally Delete FB’s Games Apps &, therefore, all Games Notifications — enlighten me, please!
Go to your “Settings” page, look and click the “App” link on the menu panel on the left-side. It will display your Apps connected to facebook. You can delete you Apps from there. You will not get notifications corresponding to the apps deleted..
I have nothing like “Privacy Checkup” on any of my Facebook Pages. I do not have it. How can I run what is not there?
Hi Sandra, You can find it by clicking the padlock with three lines on the top right hand side on any Facebook page. You should see the dinosaur there. If not, it might be that it’s not available in your country yet. You should still be able to make your profile visible to Friends only using the steps above. Good luck!
I am in the United States and have had a Facebook account for years. When I click on the padlock the Dinosaur does not appear. The same choices that have always been there:
Privacy Shortcuts = search box;
Who can see my stuff?
Who can contact me?
How do I stop someone from bothering me?
I have set everything on my security settings they way they should be, but would just like to see this new fix at work.