By Erin Corbett
December 19, 2018

Concerned about using Facebook and its apps? Users of the social media monolith might be, in light of a damning report from the New York Times that reveals the social networking site made user data available to other tech companies, including Amazon, Microsoft, and Sony.

Among information Facebook shared with these companies were email addresses of users’ friends, according to the newspaper, basing its report on 2017 Facebook documents it obtained.

Additionally, Facebook gave Netflix and Spotify access to users’ private messages. Device manufacturers like Apple were also given special access to build feature plug-ins.

Facebook has been at the center of a number of data scandals since the 2016 U.S. election. Disclosures that have rocked trust over the social media company include revelations the British data mining company Cambridge Analytica without consent harvested personal data from millions of Facebook users to build voter profiles used to target individuals in political canvassing.

If you’re worried about your privacy on Facebook—despite the company’s reassurances about protecting customers—and want to abandon the service, here are steps you can take to delete Facebook and Facebook Messenger from your phone, as well as to permanently delete your account.

Delete the Facebook App Only From Your Phone

For iPhone and Android users, by just deleting the app some of your privacy can still be protected, including your location. The process is straightforward. On an iPhone, simply press and hold the app icon until an “X” appears in the top left corner, which is then clicked to remove the app. On Android, go into settings, and choose “applications” or “app manager.” Select Facebook or Facebook Messenger from the list and tap “uninstall.”

Delete Facebook Permanently

Want to permanently delete your account? You might want to first download a copy of all your Facebook data to keep. Do this on the Facebook website. Go to settings and choose “Your Facebook Information.” There, you can select what data you want to download, whether it’s everything from comments to location information and search history, or simply your photos and videos.

Ready to permanently delete your account? In the same section, titled, “Your Facebook Information,” click “Delete Your Account Information.”

 

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