If you haven’t checked your Facebook contact information recently, you may be surprised to discover that it probably includes phone numbers imported from your phone, and/or from the phones of friends. This is mainly a concern for people who access Facebook from a mobile phone, since that’s the primary source of information, but many of these imported numbers are also visible to users like me, whose only access is through a computer. Fortunately, there are ways to manage the names that appear on these lists, and by whom they can be seen.
To disable Imported Contacts, under the Account tab, click Edit Friends.
Clicking the Contacts tab on the left will reveal Phonebook Contacts.
To the far right, click the link under Phonebook Contacts.
You will be taken to the Remove Imported Contacts page. Just follow the directions that apply to you.
A less drastic option is to adjust your privacy settings. Under the Account tab, click Privacy Preferences.
Then, set your Contact Information to be made visible only to you. This won’t remove the information, but it will be for your eyes only. The image below shows my settings before they were changed.
In the Sharing on Facebook section, click Customize settings.
Scroll down to Contact information and in the Mobile phone section, select Customize.
In the Custom Privacy dialog box, click Only Me.
You’d think that the most phenomenally successful social network ever would make security a priority in their default settings, but you’d be wrong. So, it’s left to the user to remain vigilant about intrusive features like this, and to maintain their individual social network defenses.
I’d like to thank my friend Susan for the heads up on this topic. If you’d like to thank her yourself, she can be reached at 555-….