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Facebook has been in news for past couple of days. With the Cambridge Analytica fiasco, things aren’t getting easy for Facebook. Their shares have also plummeted and people are also deleting their accounts. Elon Musk also deleted all the pages from Facebook including Telsa, SpaceX, SolarCity and many more.
Facebook knows a lot about you, even if you don’t use it that often. They also track people, who are visiting other websites with a Facebook widget or share buttons, comment systems.
Tracking cookies are always there on your system and would remain there until you delete them. Whenever you visit a new website which has a facebook element on it. It collects the data, about your preferences, your choices and what not. That data will be used to target ads. Facebook is a big part of our everyday life. Big brands also need Facebook to have a presence but being tracked all the time is something you might not be comfortable with. It also not limited to Facebook, all major social network and search engines do that.
In this post, we will take a look at how to stop facebook tracking across and web. Mozilla has released an add-on Facebook Container. It prevents Facebook tracking across the web. Sadly this add-on is only Firefox.
How To Stop Facebook Tracking Across Web
How to Stop Facebook Tracking on Mozilla
If you use Mozilla Firefox as your default browser, then Facebook Container is the best choice for you to block Facebook tracking. All you need to do is just download the add-on and you are good to go.
The beauty of Facebook Container is that you would be able to use Facebook normally. But Facebook won’t be able to track you outside using cookies. It creates an isolation zone and will always delete the cookies once you log out from your account. Making it harder for Facebook to track you once you are logged out.
If you visit other websites which have Facebook widgets or plugin installed, It will also block them. The only downside is that if you use Facebook Login on a different website. It might create some problem.
With Facebook Container, you won’t feel any difference in the website usability. You will see the ads, you will receive targetted massages. But It won’t be able to track you once you logged out or visiting a different website.
You can install the Facebook Container from here
Now if you are using a different browser like chrome or safari, you can try the second method for all other browsers.
How To Stop Facebook Tracking Across Web ( Chrome, Safari, Opera, and other browsers)
Earlier there was an extension (Facebook Blocker) for such purpose but it had been discontinued now. You can use the Adblock Plus to achieve the same goals.
Adblock plus will prevent loading any Facebook elements on different websites. This will also result in faster page load times and of course no tracking.
image source – Mozilla
If you search Chrome Web Apps there are many extensions which claim to the same thing. But we are going to stick with Adblock Plus. It is a trustworthy tool and many of you might be using it already.
Block Facebook Tracking Using Adblock Plus
Step 1 – Follow this link www.adblockplus.org and download it for your browser.
Step 2 – Now you need to open the Adblock Plus Options.
A new tab will open with all the options for Adblock Plus.
Step 3 – Now go to the Filter list, and select the Add filter subscription option
Step 4 – Select Add a different Subscription. You can name the list whatever you want. Now in the list location paste this URL https://easylist-downloads.adblockplus.org/fanboy-social.txt
Note – This list (Fanboy Social) blocks all the social media. If you want to allow the ones you want, you can edit the list and remove the one you like.
Step 5 – Click on Add List. It will take some time to download the list.
Step 6 – Now to block the Facebook Widget, head over to the Add your own filters, add the following lines to the list.
You can close the Adblock Plus settings. Changes will take effect immediately. You can also whitelist the site where you wanna see the social share icons or facebook widgets. Just add the preferred domain in the whitelisted domains and this method won’t work there.
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Stop Facebook Tracking through Ad Preference Settings
You can also use facebook settings to opt out of being tracked. Above methods would work great but this method also ensures some peace of mind when you are using mobile apps.
Follow this link to go to ad preference settings and log in to your account.
Now select Ads on apps and websites off of the Facebook Companies. On the bottom by default, the option would be set to Yes, simply change it to No.
Note – This method is only for those who use Facebook. For the non-facebook users, methods mentioned above would work fine.
Conclusion – How To Stop Facebook Tracking Across Web
In the case of Facebook, people are upset because there was a breach of trust. Facebook user data obtained by a Facebook app was handed over to the Cambridge Analytica without any consent or knowledge. Facebook is trying to do the damage control, they even got a full front page apology ad in UK newspapers. To learn more about Cambridge Analytica and Facebook controversy. You can check out this video by Verge
What are your thoughts on Facebook data scandal? Are you an active Facebook user? Would you consider using these methods to block Facebook tracking? Let us know in the comment section below.