You might have concerns over your online privacy, you are fed up with never-ending status updates from old college friends, or you have realized half of what happens on Facebook isn’t that cool after all.
You can join the other millions of Facebook users who feel the same way and are now thinking how to delete your Facebook account.
What was once hard to do, is now easier, and here we will take you through the steps required.
First, though, we will take a look at deleting your account, or if you deactivate your Facebook account and what the difference between the two is.
by Jared Clarke - Privacy advocate and tech writer
Deleting or Deactivating Your Facebook Account
What is the Difference?
To get your Facebook account offline, there are two ways you can go about it. The first option is deactivating your account, and this would consist of the following:
- You have the ability to reactivate your account when you want
- Facebook users can’t see your Facebook profile or timeline or search for you
- Some sent messages might still be visible
- Facebook will still hold all of your data and account information in case you reactivate your account
When you go for the second option, and see how to delete Facebook account permanently, the following would apply:
- Facebook will delay the deletion of your account after the request. This gives you a few days grace period. If you log in during this time, the deletion process will be canceled.
- You have no way to access your account once it has been deleted
- To clear all the data, Facebook has stored on you can take up to 90 days to clear. But, this information isn’t available to anyone during this time.
- Some items won’t be stored in your account such as sent messages to your friend’s lists. These remain active.
- According to the company, there are some copies of log records that might remain in the Facebook database. The company says these are disassociated from your personal identifiers.
- You can’t use Facebook Messenger
How to Deactivate Facebook Account
There are four simple steps to deactivate your FB account. These are as follows, but don’t forget, if you try and log in during the date range of the grace period, your account will be active again.
- On any page inside FB, click the account menu drop down at the top right page corner
- Click the option for ‘Settings’
- Select ‘General’ in the left-hand column
- Click ‘Manage your account.’
- Select ‘Deactivate your account’ and then follow the on-screen instructions to confirm your choice.
To regain access, just log into FB with your email and password, and all of your personal data will be reinstated.
How to delete Facebook account
Deleting your social media account is more drastic than just switching off for a while. So, for this reason, you need to make certain, you are sure it is something you want to do.
As soon as you go past the ‘Welcome to Facebook’ message, you can use the service for plenty of useful things.
It can be one of the easiest ways to communicate with friends when abroad. But, on the other hand, it can take over and affect job prospects and friendships if you aren’t careful.
Before you decide to delete everything, you might think there are some things you wish to keep. These first steps will help you to download your archives.
- On your settings page, click on ‘Your Facebook Information’ and then Download Your Information.
- You are forwarded to the information archive page. Here, you select exactly what you want to download, as well as anything in a set range of dates, archive format, and chosen media quality.
- Your own information will be shown first, but scrolling down allows you to pick and choose other information about you also.
- Once you have finished selecting your information, click the blue button called ‘Create File,’ and the archiving process begins.
- You can check on the archive progress in the ‘Available Files.’ If any file is still being in process, you will see the archive as ‘Pending’ until the time it’s ready to be downloaded.
- You can download single content types like photos or select a full backup which downloads all of your Facebook data.
Deleting You FB Account Forever
- Following these simple steps, you can say goodbye to the social network giant forever. Once you are sure this is the right thing to do, you can quickly permanently delete your FB account.
- Navigate to your settings page, or you can alternatively click the arrow in the top right hand corner of the page and access your personal settings from there.
- Next, on the left, you will see a list of settings which are available to you. Click the ‘Your Facebook Information’ and then select ‘Delete Your Account and Information.’
- The following page will appear with some suggestions for deactivating your account or downloading your Facebook information. Because you are at the deletion stage, ignore these two options and click ‘Delete Account’ option.
- As a secondary measure, you are prompted to enter your FB password. Do this, and then click on ‘Continue.’
- That is all there is to it, and if you decide to cancel the deletion. You have 30 days to make a login into your account and select the ‘Cancel Deletion’ option. If you don’t do this, wait for the month to pass, and then your FB account will be permanently erased.
Speeding Up Facebook Account Deletion
You can do a few things to make the process quicker by deleting some parts of your content manually. This can speed up the 90-day deletion process.
Your activity log should be the first place to head, here you can filter content to delete. After this, you can go through all connected apps and websites, and all you need to do here is select the boxes and click on remove.
The same can be carried out for any photos or albums you want to be rid of, but it should be noted, you can’t delete your profile cover or featured pictures this way.
It is a huge challenge to stay private with so many services and sites requiring information from you.
However, this is one step you can take, and there are other ways for you to remain private, but these need the help of other services such as a VPN.