How to delete your Facebook account permanently after Cambridge Analytica data misuse row

By: | Updated: March 22, 2018 12:26 PM

People are deleting Facebook to show their anger against the data misuse by Cambridge Analytica. If you too want to be a part of the #DeleteFacebook movement and delete Facebook from your life, here is a quick guide

#DeleteFacebook – kicked off where several people participated to vent their outrage against the social media giant. (Source: Reuters)

Facebook is witnessing what can be termed as its toughest times right now. The social media giant has been summoned by regulators over illicit data access given to a UK-based analysis firm called Cambridge Analytica — which influenced the US Presidential Elections in 2016 — and people at large are deleting Facebook in favour of the earnest call to protect their private data from going into wrong hands. If you too want to get rid of social media and join ranks with them, the process is simple although involves you to give up a lot of other things.

The movement against Facebook began last week when it was discovered that Cambridge Analytica stealthily stole the data of over 50 million Facebook profiles that it utilised to manipulate the Presidential Elections in the US. A Twitter hashtag – #DeleteFacebook – kicked off where several people participated to vent their outrage against the social media giant. Moreover, things escalated quickly when one of the WhatsApp co-founders Brian Acton publicly asked his followers on Twitter to delete Facebook – “It is time. #deletefacebook” he wrote.

The issue of Facebook data misuse soon took Indian politics by storm. On Thursday, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad warned Facebook against any attempts to rig the upcoming elections. The minister warned that the Indian government can even summon Zuckerberg if any such attmepts come to light. The social media firm had to later open up and assure that it will work in diligence with the appropriate means without concealing any data.

The uproar against Facebook is not new. According to a report by The New York Times, it was in 2014 when over 270,000 people decided to take a part in a survey and use an app that accesses their friends’ data. Cambridge Analytica is said to have obtained the survey results and manifested an insight for its clients – including the Donald Trump election campaigners. While the latter has been denying its involvement in the data misuse case by Cambridge Analytica, as reported by Associated Press, a separate report by CBS said that the data was used for the preliminary election.

Let us now finally come to what Facebook users should do, if they are uncomfortable putting their private data up on Facebook. There can be three options to this problem – deactivate the account, stop sharing data with Facebook, and delete your account. While the deactivation is a temporary plug-off from the social media website, deleting your profile will remove you and anything related to you from Facebook.

We explained the second option where you can secure your data from Facebook without having to lose access to the platform. The movement to delete Facebook is on the rise and if you want to do the same, here are some steps that you can follow:

How to delete Facebook account:

1 – Ponder over your choice, again – The decision to delete your Facebook should not be impromptu, as the deletion means that everything you have posted so far on Facebook will be dumped. If you are not willing to delete your account, you can deactivate it – and return to the platform at any time. Deleting it will erase all your data forever.

2 – Be prompt to give up a lot of other things – Deleting or even deactivating your Facebook account will instantly deprive you of the other services that you may be using, including Instagram, Messenger, and other third-party apps. If you still want to consider using Facebook without sharing too much, you can read our guide on how to scrub all your activities from the reach of Facebook apps.

3 – Backing up data is always good – Now, you are prepared, both mentally and emotionally, to uproot Facebook out of your life. But wait, would you not like to have a backup of all the data that you’ve shared on Facebook so far? Download a copy of all your data from the website by going to Settings, followed by a click on General. After this, click on the Download a copy of your Facebook data button. Before leaving make sure you inform your Facebook friends about your departure.

4 – Just do it – Now that you have your Facebook data safe with you, it is the right time to do the thing you’ve been preparing yourself for. Now, without looking back, head to this website – https://www.facebook.com/help/delete_account, take a deep breath, and now click the Delete My Account button. Everything that you have done on Facebook including your posts, photos, and videos will still be available for two more weeks, while Facebook will begin the period of 90 days of wiping your off the website.

5 – Let go of other strings – You have deleted your Facebook account solely because you don’t want ‘eavesdropping’, right? So, wouldn’t it be hypocritical if you keep using Instagram, another Facebook app, and Messenger, for that matter? You may give this a thought and trash them too, to live your life ‘Facebook-free’.

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