Facebook Places – Security Issues

You may have noticed that Facebook launched its new Facebook Places service.

It’s not up-and-running here in the UK yet but it wont be long til it is.

As with anything to do with Facebook these days there’s some concern regarding privacy.

Righty, what’s this Facebook Places about anyhow?

Well, everyone’s favourite social hub is bringing check-ins and location based services to FB.

If you’re familiar with FourSquare and Gowalla you’ll know what to expect.

If you follow me on Twitter or are a Facebook friend of mine you’ll know that I dig FourSquare – chances are that I’ll give Places a whirl but there is a little niggle that’s come to light already.

Friends can check you into places – even if you wanted it kept on the down-low.

On the one-hand it’s a nice and innocent enough idea – say a mob of you are going to a house party or gathering of some sort, perhaps a festival, the organiser can check everyone in which would be pretty sweet.

Not so great if you’ve told your boss that you’re unwell and your ‘friend’ tags you as being at the local for a liquid lunch 😉

If you want to avoid this type of thing here’s how to switch it off as it’s on by default.

1. Go to Account, Privacy Settings

2. Click Customise Settings

3. Scroll down to “Things Others Share” and select Disabled from the “Friends can check me into places” drop down box.

4. Sorted.

Now, if you’re totally not happy with location-based apps you may hear alarm bells when you see the “Include me in “People Here Now” after I check in” box – don’t worry this can also be disabled but also negates the whole point of this service really.

I read a tweet this morning and, true enough, the Facebook Places logo does indeed look like a 4 in a square. 🙂

With this iPhone app update FaceBook has also followed FourSquare and Twitter and added the ‘pull down to refresh’ action to its app as well as refreshing some of the menu logos.

Is anyone already using Facebook Places?  Anyone looking forward to doing so?

Let me know 🙂

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