Synthetic Snake Oil: Online Security Tips

DP81 Deleting Facebook - Considerations And Steps

March 6, 2020

Over the years Facebook has done a lot of questionable things. There’s been the 2016 scandal with Cambridge Analytica and more recently Facebook has admitted that it’s been used as a disinformation tool and allowed people to run fake political ads meant to sway voters.


On top of that, Facebook has turned into a tool where a lot of information is passed around and Facebook is profiting from it in a big way. It’s to the point that people are uneasy, or angry at Facebook and want to delete their account.


While those feelings are certainly warranted, Facebook has not made it easy for us users to delete our account. First of all, Facebook has two methods for us to remove ourselves from Facebook: deactivation and deletion. And while you’d think both of those options are the same there is a huge difference.


Deactivation is the process which opens up the possibility of you coming back with all your data intact. Deletion is the process of permanently removing your data from Facebook and is a time-consuming process.


It’s also worth noting if you deactivate your Facebook account, Facebook makes all of that data available, even if you never return. That means Facebook still profits from your data even though you’re not using it.


Naturally Facebook pushes the deactivation feature more over permanently deleting your Facebook page, but to delete your Facebook account requires a bit of digging. First you click on the arrow in the top right corner and click on Settings. From there click Your Facebook Information followed by Deactivation and Deletion and the Delete Account and follow the steps there.


The steps are simple, but that only starts the deletion process. Facebook doesn’t immediately delete your Facebook account. According to their data policy, if you log in within 30 days you can cancel the process. On top of that it’ll take upwards of 90 days for the process to be fully complete. Even after 30 days of the account being deleted you can somehow log into that old account which makes no sense.


Some other considerations to have before deleting are the fact that you can’t get access to your photos, videos, and messages. You’ll no longer be able to use Facebook Messenger, and some information will still be visible even after you delete your account. Most of that data is messages you sent to people at the time. That being said, retrieving the data can be salvaged if you consider Facebook’s back up feature.


We’ll be seeing similar themes through the other social media platforms when it comes to account deletion.

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