TechInAfrica – Facebook goes on with being ignorant about its users’ privacy, including with their phone numbers. To better secure our privacy, we at least need to set up 2-steps of authentication, just in case our password’s traced.
When you have set up 2-steps authentication with your phone number, everyone can find your profile using your phone number. Facebook connects your number to your account and associates it from your profile. Furthermore, if you have an Instagram account and sign your phone number for 2-steps authentication, it will also be connected to it. So, everyone can also see your Instagram account or even suggested to add you as “people you may know”.
If you want to hide your phone number from being seen by everyone, go to your privacy tab. You can see that your phone number is set up public by default to everyone. You can change it to friends of friends or user’s friends.
WhatsApp also has a feature to share phone number to Facebook, but you can opt it out. Nevertheless, if somebody shares your number to Facebook using their smartphone, people can still find your account though you have hidden it.
Facebook claims that the on-default feature is to help users find friends easily. It doesn’t seem that Facebook let users opt out since it’s needed for displaying ads. In an interview with Mark Zuckerberg at Harvard, he highlighted that ‘Facebook as a subscription service’ is not as simple as it may seem.
However, Mark said that they are currently working on new data privacy controls so that a subscription service won’t be necessary anymore.
You can take an extra step to hide your phone number by using an authenticator app. It helps you to better secure your Facebook account, especially from being detected by everyone using a phone number. Go to your Facebook Account, click on the hamburger icon on the top left, go to Settings and Privacy > Privacy > Privacy Shortcuts.