Now that you have taken all of those photos, you’d like to put them up on Facebook for all of your friends (but only your friends) to see. Be careful, because Facebook defines “private” differently than you do.
You may say that the photo is private in your control panel, but that does not necessarily make it so. The privacy settings are designed to make the “private” photos public, but it does not seem to work that way. If you can see a photo, you can copy it. All you have to do is right click on it and choose “copy link” to copy and paste the link into Facebook or another application, or just click on Save image to save it to your hard disk.
And the bad part of all this is that once someone has copied and pasted the link to one of their friend’s photo on a Facebook page, that mean that all of their friends now have access to it, and that will certainly include some Facebook members who were not friends of the person that originally posted the photo. As ITPRO, who found the security flaw, explains it, “If Tom decides to share a photo with Betty and only Betty, Betty can in fact share that photo wherever she pleases without Tom knowing by simply right clicking on the photo and copying the address or image location.”
Security experts are not exactly thrilled by this lack of security and privacy. For example, Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos and something of a Facebook expert, says “The fact that you can see ‘private’ photos when you’re not even logged in to Facebook suggests that they simply haven’t grasped what privacy is all about. Only Facebook users who are logged in and authorized to view specific photos should be able to see the photos.”
The only way to be safe with photos is to not put them on Facebook at all. Remember, anything you place on Facebook is liable to wind up in the hands of other Facebook members or, worse, in the hands of advertisers to whom Facebook sells your information. There is nothing private about Facebook, period.