Control Who Can See What You Share

Privacy Settings and Privacy Checkup
You can view and adjust your privacy settings at any time. To view and adjust your privacy settings:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. Click Privacy in the left column.
For other things you share on Facebook, you can select the audience before you share.
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Privacy Checkup guides you through some of your privacy and security settings, so you can review your choices to help make sure that you’re sharing with who you want.
To go to Privacy Checkup:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Click Settings & Privacy > Privacy Checkup.
Things you can review in Privacy Checkup:
  • Who can see what you share. This section guides you through things like:
    • Choosing who can see certain information on your profile, like your phone number, email, birthday and relationship status.
    • Updating who can see your future and past posts.
    • Reviewing who you’ve blocked on Facebook. For example, you can add people to your blocked list. Learn more about what happens when you block someone on Facebook.
  • How to keep your account secure. This section will guide you through things like:
    • Updating your password. Learn more about creating a strong password.
    • Turning on alerts to help let you know if someone logs into your account from a place we don’t recognize.
  • How people can find you on Facebook. This section lets you choose who can:
    • Send you friend requests.
    • Look you up on Facebook by your phone number or email address.
  • Your data settings on Facebook. This section lets you review and remove recently used apps and websites from other companies that you’ve used Facebook to log into.
Note: Privacy Checkup isn't available everywhere right now. For example, Privacy Checkup may not be available on certain devices.
Other ways to manage your privacy:
Learn more about how to control who can see what you share. From here, you can learn how to:
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Something that’s public can be seen by anyone. That includes people who aren’t your friends, people off of Facebook and people who use different media such as print, broadcast (example: television) and other sites on the Internet. For example, if you use our services to provide a real-time public comment to a television show, that may appear on the show or elsewhere on Facebook.
What information is public?
Information you share that is always public: Some of the information you give us when you fill out your profile is public, such as your age range, language and country. We also use a part of your profile, called your Public Profile, to help connect you with friends and family. Your Public Profile includes your name, gender, username and user ID (account number), profile picture, cover photo and networks. This info is also public. Some of the ways this helps us connect you are:
  • Your name, profile picture and cover photo help people recognize you.
  • Gender helps us describe you (example: "Add her as a friend").
  • Listing your networks (example: school, workplace) allows others to find you more easily.
  • Username and user ID (example: your account number) are in the URL of your profile.
  • Age range helps provide you with age-appropriate content.
  • Language and country help us provide appropriate content and experiences.
Information you share publicly: When you choose to share something with Public (example: when you select Public from the audience selector), it’s considered public information. If you share something and you don’t see an audience selector or another privacy setting, that information is also public. Learn more about using the audience selector to control who you share with when you post to Facebook.
Stuff other people share: If other people share info about you, even if it’s something you shared with them but did not make public, they can choose to make it public. Also when you comment on other people’s public posts, your comment is public as well.
Posts on Facebook Pages or public groups: Facebook Pages and public groups are public spaces. Anyone who can see the Page or group can see your post or comment. Generally, when you post or comment on a Page or to a public group, a story can be published in News Feed as well as other places on or off Facebook.
Remember that public information can:
  • Be associated with you, even off Facebook.
  • Show up when someone does a search on Facebook or on another search engine.
  • Be accessible to Facebook-integrated games, applications and websites you and your friends use.
  • Be accessible to anyone who uses our APIs, such as our Graph API.
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Who Can See What You Post
You’ll find the audience selector most places you share content on Facebook, such as posts, photos and for some information on your profile.
To choose who you share content with:

  1. At the top of your News Feed or timeline, click What’s on your mind? From here, you can do things like post a status update, photo, video or check in to an event.
  2. Below your name, click the audience selector (example: Friends).
  3. Click the audience you’d like to see your content (example: Friends, Public or Only Me). Learn more about the audiences you can choose on Facebook.
The audience selector will also appear on things you've already shared, so you can see who you've shared each post with. After you've shared a post, you have the option to change who it's shared with.
When sharing on Facebook, keep in mind:
  • Some things you share on Facebook will always be public. For example, when you post or comment in a public group, your post or comment will be public and can be seen by anyone. Learn more about public information on Facebook.
  • When you select an audience for your post, the audience selector will use the same audience when you share a post again unless you change it. For example, if you choose Public for something you’re posting right now, your next post will also be Public.
  • When you change the audience on one device, the audience will update on all devices. For example, if you change the audience of your post on your computer, it will also change the audience of your post in your app.
  • Your post will show up in News Feed, on your profile and in search results.
  • When you post to another person's timeline, that person controls who can see the post.
  • When you post, people in the audience may be able to see it across the Facebook Products.
  • If you tag someone in a post, the tagged person’s friends may also see the post.
  • If you’ve chosen to lock your profile, your sharing choices are more restricted.
Other ways to manage who can see your content:
Learn more about who can see your posts in groups or on a Page, and how to choose who can see your story.
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When you post something on Facebook, you can use the audience selector to choose who can like or comment on it.
If you create a public post, by default everyone can like or comment, even people who aren't following you. However, you can change who can like or comment on your public posts in your follower settings.
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When someone clicks Share below your post, they aren’t able to share your photos, videos or status updates through Facebook with people who weren’t in the audience you originally selected to share with. Only the people who could see those posts when you first made them are able to see them when someone clicks Share. Use the audience selector to adjust who you share posts with.
Note: When a friend shares a link that you posted, they can share the link with a wider audience than you originally shared it with. Keep in mind that any text you added in your post will not be shared.
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When you add a hashtag to your post, the people you’ve shared your post with can also see it in that hashtag's feed. For example, if you share a post with a hashtag with the audience Friends, people you're friends with can see your post in that hashtag’s feed.
If you use a hashtag in a post you share to a Public audience, and allow people to follow you, your post will appear on your public profile and in that hashtag's feed.
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When using Facebook on your mobile device, some apps and features don't have an audience selector to control the audience of posts and other things you share. To select the audience things are shared with from these apps:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. Click Apps and Websites and scroll down to Old versions of Facebook for Mobile.
  4. Review your current audience settings or select a new audience (such as Only Me).
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Your Profile Info
Here's an overview of who can see what's on your profile and tools you can use to control what you share on your profile and timeline.
Overview
  • To edit things like places you’ve lived or your family and relationships, click About below your cover photo, then click next to the info you’d like to change and click Edit. Use the audience selector next to this info to choose who you're sharing it with.
  • Anyone can see your public information, which includes your name, profile picture, cover photo, gender, username, user ID (account number), and networks (learn why).
  • Only you and your friends can post to your timeline. When you post something, you can control who sees it by using the audience selector. When other people post on your timeline, you can control who sees it by choosing the audience of the Who can see what others post on your timeline setting.
Tools
  • As you edit your info, you can control who sees what by using the audience selector.
  • Before photos, posts and app activities that you’re tagged in appear on your timeline, you can approve or dismiss them by turning on timeline review. Keep in mind, you can still be tagged, and the tagged content (example: photo, post) is shared with the audience the person who posted it selected other places on Facebook (example: News Feed and search).
  • Set an audience for who can see posts you’ve been tagged in on your timeline.
  • To see what your profile looks like to other people, use the View As tool.
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You can edit your basic personal information (for example: gender, contact info, relationships, work, education). To edit your info:
  1. Click your profile picture in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Click About > Contact and Basic Info.
  3. Click or select to add information.
  4. Add or change the information you'd like to edit.
  5. Make changes to the privacy of your information by selecting the current privacy setting (example: Public, Friends or Only me).
  6. Click Save.
If you set your gender to Custom and select one or more genders, you can also select an audience for your custom gender. In addition to your custom gender, you'll choose a Pronoun. The pronoun you select is public. This feature isn't available in all locations.
Note that your email has additional settings.
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You can see what your profile looks like to people on Facebook who you're not friends with.
To use View As:
  1. Click your profile picture in the top right.
  2. Click below your name.
To exit, click Exit View As in the banner.
Keep in mind that posts and photos you've hidden on your timeline are still visible to the audience they're shared with other places on Facebook, like News Feed and search. Learn more about public information.
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Your email has both a privacy setting (that controls who you share it with) and a setting that controls whether it shows on your profile or not.
For example, you can choose to show your email on your profile, but set its privacy to Friends, so your email is shared on your profile and other places on Facebook with your friends.
To adjust who you share your email with and decide if it shows on your profile:
  1. Click your profile picture in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Click About at the top of your profile.
  3. Click Contact and Basic Info in the left menu.
  4. Click Edit next to your email and click the audience selector next to your email to change the audience it's shared with and save any changes.
Note: When you hide your email on your profile, the people you share it with can still access your email elsewhere, such as in search and other places on Facebook.
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By default, the Friends section of your profile is public, meaning everyone can see it.
To adjust who can see your Friends section:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. In the left column, click Privacy.
  4. Look for the setting Who can see your friends list? and click Edit to the far right.
  5. Select the audience of people (such as Friends) you'd like to have access to your friends list.
Keep in mind:
  • You can only control who can see your friends list on your profile. Your friends also control who can see their friendships on their own profiles.
    For example, if you set your friends list to Only Me, only you'll be able to see your full friends list on your profile. But, if your friend has their friends list set to Public, anyone can see that you're friends.
  • If people can see your friendship on another profile, they'll also be able to see it in News Feed, Search and other places on Facebook.
  • People may see mutual friends when they visit your profile.
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You can control who can see your contact info right from your profile:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select See your profile.
  3. Click About and click Contact and Basic Info in the left menu.
  4. Next to each piece of contact info, you can use the audience selector to adjust who you share it with.
Learn about additional settings for your email.
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Your Timeline
No, Facebook doesn't let people track who views their profile. Third-party apps also can't provide this functionality. If you come across an app that claims to offer this ability, please report the app.
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No. Private messages only appear in your inbox on Facebook or on the Messenger app. Learn more about what people can see on your timeline.
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When you share something on your timeline, you can use the audience selector to choose who it's shared with. If you want to change who can see things you've already posted, you can:
  • Choose a new audience for one of your past posts.
  • Change who can see all of your past posts to Friends at one time with Limit Past Posts.
To choose a new audience for one of your past posts:
  1. Click your profile picture in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Scroll down to the post you want to edit.
  3. Click the audience selector next to the date or time on the post. The icon will be different depending on its current audience settings.
  4. Select who can see the post from the options that appear (example: Public, Friends, Only Me).
To change who can see all your past posts at one time:
If you'd like to limit who can see all of your past posts at one time, you can Limit Past Posts in your account settings. This will change all your past posts visible to more people than just your friends (example: posts shared with Public) to be visible to only your Friends.
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. In the left column, click Privacy.
  4. Next to Limit the audience for posts you've shared with friends of friends or Public?, click Limit Past Posts.
  5. Click Limit Past Posts > Limit Past Posts to confirm.
When you use Limit Past Posts to change the audience of all your past posts:
  • When you Limit Past Posts, you’ll change the audience of all your past posts to Friends. If you want to change the audience of your posts back to what they were, you'll need to change the audience of each individual post. Limiting the audience of your previous posts cannot be reversed in one click.
  • If you have shared a previous post with a custom audience, such as Friends except Acquaintances or Close Friends, Limit Past Posts won’t change the audience for those past posts.
  • If you tagged someone in the post, the audience of the post will still include the person you tagged and people they include in posts they're tagged in. Learn more about how to change the audience of a post to just your friends when you tag someone. You can also remove the tag.
  • Limit Past Posts only controls the audience for posts you've shared. If you've been tagged in someone else's post, they control the audience for their posts.
  • When you share something on someone else's timeline, that person controls the audience for the post.
Learn more about how to control what people can see on your profile and timeline.
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To select the audience for things your friends share on your timeline:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. Click Timeline and Tagging in the left column.
  4. Next to the setting Who can see what others post on your Timeline? click Edit to the right.
  5. Select an audience (example: Friends) from the dropdown menu.
Note: Posts on your timeline may appear other places on Facebook, like News Feed and Search, for people who are in the audience they're shared with (example: friends, public, custom).
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To choose who can see posts you’ve been tagged in after they appear on your timeline:
  1. Click in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Select Settings & Privacy > Settings.
  3. In the left column, click Timeline and Tagging.
  4. Look for the setting Who can see posts you're tagged in on your timeline? and click Edit to the far right.
  5. Select the audience of people (such as Friends) that you'd like to be able to see the posts you've been tagged in.
You can review photos and posts you're tagged in before they appear on your timeline by turning on timeline review.
Keep in mind, photos and posts you hide from your timeline are visible to the audience they're shared with other places on Facebook, such as in News Feed and Search.
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You can use the audience selector to change who can see things (example: posts and photos) you share on your timeline after you share it. Keep in mind, when you share something on someone else's timeline, they control the audience for the post.
To change the audience of things you've shared on your timeline:
  1. Click your profile picture in the top right of Facebook.
  2. Scroll down to the post you want to edit.
  3. Click the audience selector next to the date or time on the post. The icon will be different depending on its current audience settings.
  4. Select a new audience from the options that appear (example: Public, Friends, Only Me).
Learn more about how to control what people can see on your profile and timeline.
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Keep in mind that things you've hidden from your timeline may still show up in other places on Facebook, including News Feed and search (example: if you shared a photo or post with someone). To limit who can see your things in search, you can change the audience for something you share, or you can remove it from Facebook.
To review all the posts you’ve hidden from your timeline, go to your activity log.
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When you hide a photo or post you're tagged in on your timeline, people won't be able to see it when they visit your timeline. But the photo or post will still be visible to the audience it's shared with in other places on Facebook, such as in News Feed or Search.
Keep in mind:
  • The person who uploaded a photo chooses the audience for that photo. If you're tagged in something you don't like, you can remove the tag or ask the person who posted it to take it down.
  • You can also adjust your timeline and tagging privacy setting to choose the audience who can see the content on your timeline.
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