I recently created a Youth With A Mission interest list on Facebook to help me monitor news in YWAM for the YWAM Podcast┬áthat I relaunched a few weeks ago. When I went to check the list tonight to gather some new news for Thursday’s recording of the next podcast (I’m trying to get into a consistent schedule with it) I was welcomed by some rather shocking photos from Facebook spammers

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Okay, actually these are not the shocking photos. I did not think it wise to put borderline pornographic photos on my web-site, so I found two other examples that illustrate the problem of tagging spam on Facebook.

Both of the above photos include tags of YWAM locations on them, even though they clearly to not actually involve the YWAM location. By tagging the YWAM location in those photos it allows the photos to be seen by the friends and followers of the YWAM location, which spreads the reach of the spammer.

Unfortunately you can not block photo tagging in Facebook!

It used to be that you could prevent others from tagging you on photos in Facebook. With recent changes though in Facebook privacy and security though you can no longer prevent people from tagging you in photos if you are friends with them. There are a few steps though that you can take to protect yourself.

1. Make Sure Notifications Are On for Tags

Facebook Notifications Settings

In the notification section of your profile be sure to turn on notifications for “Anyone” who tags you. This way you can find our right away if you have been tagged and can check the tag to be sure you approve of it. If you don’t approve, then remove the tag.

2. Review All Tags for Posts

Timeline and Tagging Settings

To control what shows up on your own timeline make sure that you have the review feature turned on for tags to posts in your own timeline.

3. Be Careful Who You Friend

I always check who I accept as a friend on Facebook when I get a request before hitting yes. While it may be tempting to friend everyone who asked, especially if you are still using a profile instead of a page for your ministry, but always check, and always be careful who you accept.

4. Block Them

If the person who has tagged you looks like a “bad actor” then block them. If you do that it will remove the tag and prevent you from tagging you or contacting you again on Facebook.

5. Stop Using a Facebook Profile for your Ministry

If you are still using a Facebook profile for your ministry or YWAM location I would highly recommend moving to a Facebook Page.

There are many reasons why, some of which are outlined here. One of the main reasons you should do it is that running a profile page for an organisation is actually a violation of the Facebook terms of service, and they could remove your profile at will!

So don’t delay, change your ministries Facebook profile to a page ASAP!

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