It was very easy to find old information on how to disable Facebook accounts, but there is very little in the way of permanently deleting them.
First, some sobering news. As most computer users are beginning to learn, there isn’t much in the way of Internet privacy. For many reasons, you pretty much have to assume that if you have put it online, it is in some data warehouse, somewhere, forever. For instance, while I do not know it for a fact to be true, since Facebook does backups on their servers, even if you permanently delete your Facebook account, I wouldn’t be so certain it doesn’t still exist on a backup or two somewhere.
While this is a bit off subject, services like Facebook wouldn’t be very valuable if they weren’t redundant and reliable. However, that’s another post for another day.
How To Permanently Delete Your Facebook Account
Note: Before proceeding, you may want to download your information from Facebook to your computer for your records. Instructions for downolading your Facebook information can be found by clicking here.
- It is wise to log in to your Facebook account and delete all traces of your existance first.
- Start by logging in to Facebook, click on your profile link, and click the “Friends” link under your profile picture. On the Right hand side of your Friends page you will see a button that says, “Edit Friends”. Click the “Edit Friends” button and manually delete all of your friend connections.
- After deleting all of you friend connections, return to your Profile page and click the “Photos” Link under your profile picture. Open each photo in each album and delete them one by on.
- Remove all of the tags of you on other photos. In the same Photos section as above, under the header “Photos and Videos of You,” open each photo and remove every “Tag”.
- Return to your profile page and click on the “Info” tag. Remove all information from every category. You won’t be able to remove your email address at this point.
- All of the apps you have installed have personally identifiable information. Delete all installed apps from your account by; Clicking on the Account drop down of any Facebook page, selecting “Privacy Settings,” clicking the “Edit your settings” link under the Applications and Websites section towards the bottom of the page, clicking on the applications you would like to remove. As Facebook says, “…you can find it by clicking the Edit Settings button towards the top right-hand side of the page. You’ll then see an expanded view of your settings for that application. From here, you can click the “Remove application” link.
- Last, but not least, you may want to go on to your wall and manually delete each post. Unfortunately, there is no way at this point to delete all Wall Posts at once.
- You may have taken advantage of additional features of Facebook that I have not mentioned here. Follow similar procedures for each feature until you have manually deleted as much of your data that you can find.
Now For The Permanent Deletion Part
In the past it was not possible to permanently delete your Facebook account. You could only deactivate it, which was silly because all you had to do to reactivate it was log in and it was like you never left.
Now you can permanently delete your Facebook account as follows:
- Make sure you are logged in to Facebook.
- Click This Link To Visit The Page to Permanently Delete Your Account
- Click the “Submit” button and follow the instructions.
At this point, your account is immediately deactivated and then permanently deleted in less than 14 days.