Facebook doesn't exactly make it easy for you to stay off its radar.
Some people don't like getting random friend requests or awkward messages from long-forgotten friends. Some people just want to use Facebook to keep up with others, but don't want others to be able to keep up with them.
Want to stay hidden on Facebook?
We can help you out.
When you're finished, no one but you will be able to see your Facebook activity, view your photos, or see where you've checked in. Your current friends will still be able to view your basic profile — there's no way around this — but all your activity will be blank.
Note: You don't have to block all the features we suggest. You can pick and choose. If you still want to keep things like wall posts and event invites, you can.
To get started, click on the cog in the upper right corner and select "Privacy Settings."
To change your privacy settings, you'll always click the "edit" button located to the right of each setting. Once you are done making changes, clicking "close" will exit you out of each individual section.
For the most stringent settings, select the drop down menu and select "only me." This ensure no one but you can see your future posts.
Next up, you can make it so random strangers can't send you friend requests by changing the "Who can send you friend requests" setting to "Friends of friends." Only people already friends with someone you know can now friend request you.
To further shrink from communication with the outside world, you can limit who can send you Facebook messages. Simply select "Strict Filtering" to keep randoms from messaging you.
Next, to eliminate people from looking you up using the email or phone number you used to sign up for Facebook, select "Friends" from the "Who Can Look Me Up" setting.
This next one is important. Most people can just use Google or other search engines to look up your Facebook profile. In the "Do you want other search engines to link to your Timeline?" setting, unchecking the "Let other search engines link to your timeline" box will stop that.
Now that you have your privacy settings taken care of, let's move on to the "Timeline and Tagging" category. You'll find it right below "Privacy Settings" on the left part of your screen.
You'll use the same technique in this section. Click "edit" next to each of the indicated areas and choose the strictest setting. Click "close" to exit the editing process. Remember, always choose the "Only Me" option when available. If it's not an option, choosing "Friends" is second best.
Once your done, your "Timeline and Tagging" page should look like this. Make sure your settings match up with those indicated in the red circles. Next up, we'll tackle the "Apps" section, located on a few below "Timeline and Tagging."
We're almost done! To disable the "App Platform" — which will prevent apps from gaining access to your personal information — simply click "edit" and turn it off. You'll be met with a list of things that you won't be able to do once it is disabled, such as log in to third party apps using Facebook, so think carefully before taking the plunge.
Once you have turned off the "App platform," you'll notice the Apps menu shrinks. The last category to alter is "Adverts," located directly below "Apps."
These are the "Adverts" settings. You'll start by clicking "edit" next to each setting.
Changing the "Third Party Sites" category to "No One" ensures that if Facebook ever allows third party sites to use your picture or name in advertisements, you'll be left out. Switching the "Adverts and Friends" settings to "No One" prevents Facebook from making suggestions to your friends, based one what you have "liked." After that's taken care of, you are officially finished! If you change your mind, you can always go back and change your settings, or alter how strict they are by following the same directions.
Now that you're done hiding your secrets from the Facebook world, why not see how Apple hides theirs?