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August 25, 2010

Warning: Scary Facebook Danger!

Last Friday Facebook launched it's new "Places" feature. As cool as some may think it is, it's danger just waiting to happen.

Basically, "Places" is a location-based service utilizing your phone's GPS to allow you to "check in" to locations using your cell phone. After you check-in somewhere, facebook automatically posts your location to Facebook.

The idea is that you can find friends near you. Or you can tell friends where you are so they can join you. When you stop to think about it, it sounds like a lot of fun... think again.

Letting people know your location is dangerous! It could let burglars know you are away from home. Or it might let a stalker figure out your routine. When someone clicks on your location they can even pull up an exact map and address of where you are.

Hmmm... sounds like a great way
to get stalked, robbed, raped or mugged if you ask me.

Unfortunately this feature is enabled automatically for all Facebook users, BUT you can restrict who can see your location.


How to disable FB "Places" feature:

- Open up your Facebook profile.
- Go to the Accounts menu and select Privacy Settings.
- Select the Custom option on the left.
- Click the Customize Settings link (at the bottom of the page)

- Find the "Places I Check In" option.
- I recommend setting it to Friends Only at least.
- Or even better, click Customize and select specific friends.
- On mine I set it to Only Me.


Just below is the Include Me In "People Here Now" option. This feature notifies other Facebook users when you check in near them. It doesn't matter if they are on your Friend list or not. I recommend un-checking this feature.

You might think that you're done. But Facebook added a sneaky extra feature. Your friends are allowed to check you in to places. This means your location could be broadcast without your permission. Fortunately, you can turn that off as well.

- Scroll down in the Privacy Settings to Things Others Share.
- Find an option labeled "Friends Can Check Me In To Places"
- Set that to Disabled.


{ Now your friends can't share where you are! }


I hope I helped keep you all safe! Please tell your friends about this - feel free to direct them to my post! It's a scary world out there and we all have to look out for each other!



PS- Looking for new followers or fun new blogs? Don't forget that the Mingle Monday blog hop is open until tonight (Wednesday) at midnight. Stop by and get your blog some exposure!


  1. Thank you! I've forwarded this entry to some friends.

  2. I just did this the other day! I think it's mildly creepy and wouldn't ever use it.

  3. OMGosh! Thanks for sharing. I'm linking this in my status on Facebook to share with all my friends.

  4. omg! Facebook is just getting annoying with all this crap! It makes me mad that I have to go to 3 or is it 4 spots to disable something I didnt even ask for or want in the first place. Grrrrrr!

  5. Yeah, Foursquare is annoying enough, but the Facebook Places takes it to another level.

  6. Thanks for the heads up- this does sound dangerously creepy.


  7. Thank you for the details. I'd been so busy and hadn't looked up how to do this yet. Thanks for your post!!

  8. Wow thank you... I had no idea. How crazy. I will go fix that aSAP

    BTW I tagged you

  9. thanks so much for sharing this...I had no idea! fbook is becoming more and more irritating these days. happy wednesday, girl! xo

  10. this is a realllly bad idea. i don't understand why people use it, or the Twitter equivalent. it's asking for something bad to happen.

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this, Meg! I can't believe Facebook would try and fly this in under the radar. If you don't mind, I would like to post a link to your entry on my blog. Thank you again!

  12. Boy am I glad you posted this! I just went and fixed all of my settings. I love FB, but I hate it when they add new things you don't even know are there! I will spread the word! Thanks again!

  13. I had heard about this, but didn't know it updated automatically. I just thought you had to enter the place you were at. This is very creepy. I'll have to go and disable this. Thanks for sharing.

  14. TELL. ME. ABOUT. IT. My husband just told me about this feature the other day, and I flipped out.

    I am a social worker, and as such I deal with some really sensitive issues. Often times, my safety could be in danger if my clients knew where I was.

    I appreciate that you have posted this on your blog. People really need to know...

  15. Thank you so much for posting this! I had no idea!

  16. Good advice! Facebook are starting to go a bit too far with all their new applications and ideas.

  17. Creepy! Thanks for the tip. Going to do that first thing in the morning!

  18. I heard about this on the news, thankfully it's not out for the UK facebook yet!! it's reidculous, I really don't think they have thought about this at all!! How dangerous is it, they are basicly saying it's ok for people to stalk people. promoting stalking? makes me mad xx


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