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How to delete a Facebook account permanently in 3 simple steps
Whether you’re concerned about your online privacy or just getting tired of constant status updates from old school friends that you’ve since realised aren’t actually that cool, there are plenty of reasons why you might want to delete your Facebook account – and it’s not as hard as you might think.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of how to delete Facebook step-by-step, including outlining the difference between ‘deactivating’ your account, and deleting it entirely.
If you’re thinking about deleting your account then you’re not alone. Between the Cambridge Analtyica scandal and increasing worries about the effect social media has on our individual and societal health, people are increasingly turning away from these sites that have come to dominate the internet.
Whatever your reason, deleting or deactivating your account is actually pretty easy. Here’s how you do it.
How to Delete your Facebook Account
How to delete or deactivate a Facebook account – what’s the difference?
There are two different ways to get your Facebook account offline. The first is deactivating, which means:
You can reactivate your account whenever you want
People can’t see your Facebook Timeline, or search for you
Some information may remain visible (like messages you’ve sent)
Facebook saves your account info (like friends and interests) in case you reactivate
But deleting your account is a much more serious matter. If you delete your account:
Facebook delays deletion for a few days after the request is made. If you log in during the grace period, the deletion is cancelled
You can’t regain access to your Facebook account once it’s deleted
It can take up to 90 days for your data that’s stored in backup systems to be deleted. However, your info isn’t accessible on Facebook during this time
Some things aren’t stored in your account, like messages that you’ve sent to friends – these will remain active
Copies of some material (like log records) may remain in Facebook’s database, but are “disassociated from personal identifiers,” according to the company
Basically, deactivating is a way to cool off from Facebook for a while, while deleting is a permanent solution that you should think carefully about before choosing.
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To deactivate your Facebook account, follow these four steps:
1. Click the account menu down arrow at the top right of any Facebook page in your web browser
2. Select ‘Settings’
3. Choose ‘General’ in the left column
4. Click ‘Manage your account’
5. Press ‘Deactivate your account’, and then follow the steps to confirm your decision
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