Facebook Publishes Phone Numbers, Invades Privacy Again!

Facebook giant, Mark Zuckerberg, doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of privacy.

It seems every time we turn around, Facebook is in the news with some sort of privacy issue being exposed.  Granted, Facebook is a social platform on a public domain, but as a user on that social platform we have the right to choose what we want to share.  This time Facebook has decided to share our phone numbers.  I don’t share my phone number with everyone, but I was prompted by Facebook to input this information for security purposes so I did.  As if sharing our phone numbers weren’t bad enough, from conversations I’ve had on Facebook with other individuals who have experienced the same breach, one lady even indicated she noticed her deleted phone numbers were showing up in the Facebook contacts!

Do you think I feel betrayed by Facebook now they have decided to share this information with all of my friends?  Well yes and I will tell you why.   I talk online  via IM, Skype, Google+, Twitter or Facebook with my friends.

What’s even worse is I learned Facebook may be sharing this information with ADVERTISERS!

If you want proof phone numbers are on display, take the following steps:

  • Top right corner, click Account
  • Click Edit Friends
  • Top left corner, click Contacts
You will be able see everyone’s phone numbers there.

If you don’t want your phone number displayed for everyone to see, here’s how to remove yours.

What can you do to remove your contacts from Facebook?

  • First, take the steps in the video and remove your phone number.
  • On the page where you saw the Contacts, on the RIGHT hand side you will see the following image:


According to Facebook you need to remove “SYNC” from your mobile device before you remove it from Facebook on your computer.  I was not able to find this option on my mobile device.  I even went into my system settings to manage my Facebook application in my settings and could not find it.  You may need to remove the application completely from your mobile device and re-install it.

Once you click on the “Remove” button you will be shown a screen that says it will take a few minutes and you will be notified by Facebook when it’s complete.

This may take a long time depending on the number of contacts.  If it doesn’t work after about 10 or 15 minutes you may need to try again.  I had to do it twice.  The second time I received a pop-up box at the bottom left corner indicating the process was complete.  I then went back to my contacts and was still able to see all the contacts and phone numbers, however there was a message at the top stating: “Only you can see your contacts.  Your Contacts list is like a phonebook that only you can see. It includes numbers that 1) you may have synced from your phone or 2) your friends have chosen to share with you.  To control who sees your contact information, visit your privacy settings.    If you need more help with privacy settings, see another post,  How Much Do You Share on Facebook.  Perhaps this video can help.

Good luck and as always if you have any questions you want answered, be sure to post them on my Facebook fan page or @YSMMogul on Twitter.


4 Replies to “Facebook Publishes Phone Numbers, Invades Privacy Again!”

  1. I really do not understand why Facebook feels the need to do this? It certainly can’t be down to money. It really makes no sense. All they are doing is antagonizing their customers. Just because you have a leading market share now, doesn’t mean you will in the future. Look at Nokia in the mobile category, they used to have 90% market share and now are dropping through the rankings and having a real struggle to keep pace. Things change and Facebook’s arrogance could be it’s undoing.

    But they are not alone as it seems LinkedIn have made a similar step: http://ow.ly/61ofu

    great post and thanks for the info Knikkolette. Take care Alan.

    1. Thanks for your feedback Alan. I agree about Facebook & their arrogance. Personally, I think Mr. Zuckerberg’s sister was keeping him in check and finally got tired of fighting with him all the time so she decided to start her own company, but that’s just speculation on my part. So funny you should mention LinkedIn – I had written that post too, but didn’t want to post it on the same day as the Facebook post.

  2. Hi all,

    I do not agree. I have all my numbers on FB and none are visible to anyone but me. There is the “Privacy Settings” utility where we can control who gets to see what. FB has even sent an email a year or so ago with a tutorial. Mail me if you need screenshots on how to achieve this. Cheers !

    1. Hi Darma,

      While I’m aware of Facebook’s privacy settings, I think the issue at hand is the individual’s (me/my) personal phone numbers being uploaded into contacts and shared with others on Facebook. For instance, I saw phone numbers of a few friends who did not intend to share their phone numbers with their Facebook friends. Are they at fault for not setting their privacy correctly? Perhaps, but that shouldn’t be the issue. The issue at hand should be Facebook shouldn’t be trying to put our information on display.

      Thank you so much Darma for commenting on this post. I appreciate every point of view whether it agrees with mine or not! 🙂

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