FaceBook.com says, “Facebook is about sharing information with others.” Over the past several weeks, Facebook has forced users to upgrade their privacy settings. Make sure you know how much information you are making public.
How We Share Information
Facebook is about sharing information with others — friends and people in your networks — while providing you with privacy settings that you can use to restrict other users from accessing your information. We share your information with third parties when we believe the sharing is permitted by you, reasonably necessary to offer our services, or when legally required to do so. For example:
When you make a payment. When you enter into transactions with others or make payments on Facebook, we will only share transaction information with those third parties necessary to complete the transaction and will require those third parties to agree to respect the privacy of your information.
When you invite a friend to join. When you ask us to invite a friend to join Facebook, we will send your friend a message on your behalf using your name. We may also send up to two reminders to them in your name. If your friend does not want us to keep their information, we will remove it at their request on this help page.
When you choose to share your information with marketers. You may choose to share information with marketers or electronic commerce providers that are not associated with Facebook through on-site offers. This is entirely at your discretion and we will not provide your information to these marketers without your consent.
To help your friends find you. By default, we make certain information you have posted to your profile available in search results on Facebook to help your friends find you. However, you can control who has access to this information, as well as who can find you in searches, through your privacy settings. We also partner with email and instant messaging providers to help their users identify which of their contacts are Facebook users, so that we can promote Facebook to those users.
To give search engines access to publicly available information. We generally limit search engines’ access to our site. We may allow them to access information set to the “everyone” setting and your public search listing (but you can turn off your public search listing in your privacy settings).
To help improve or promote our service. Sometimes we share aggregated information with third parties to help improve or promote our service. But we only do so in such a way that no individual user can be identified or linked to any specific action or information.
To provide you with services. We may provide information to service providers that help us bring you the services we offer. For example, we may use third parties to help host our website, send out email updates about Facebook, remove repetitive information from our user lists, process payments, or provide search results or links (including sponsored links). These service providers may have access to your personal information for use for a limited time, but when this occurs we implement reasonable contractual and technical protections to limit their use of that information to helping us provide the service.
To advertise our services. We may ask advertisers outside of Facebook to display ads promoting our services. We may ask them to deliver those ads based on the presence of a cookie, but in doing so will not share any other information with the advertiser.
To respond to legal requests and prevent harm. We may disclose information pursuant to subpoenas, court orders, or other requests (including criminal and civil matters) if we have a good faith belief that the response is required by law. This may include respecting requests from jurisdictions outside of the United States where we have a good faith belief that the response is required by law under the local laws in that jurisdiction, apply to users from that jurisdiction, and are consistent with generally accepted international standards. We may also share information when we have a good faith belief it is necessary to prevent fraud or other illegal activity, to prevent imminent bodily harm, or to protect ourselves and you from people violating our Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. This may include sharing information with other companies, lawyers, courts or other government entities.