Is It Ethical for a Business to Have a Personal Facebook Profile?

business facebook personal security May 27, 2024
Handsome young man shows a captivating young lady her private Facebook post that a business has accidently reposted.  The pretty woman is annoyed and concerned about her Facebook privacy.  They were out for drinks at a nice restaurant. This has ruined the night..


If you're worried about your online security, you should be careful about who you're friends with on Facebook.

One important rule to follow is: never friend a business on Facebook. It’s not ethical for businesses to have personal profiles, and it can put your privacy at risk.


Understanding Facebook Basics

When you sign up for Facebook, you do so as a person. You become friends with other people, and you share personal updates with them. Your privacy settings help control who sees your information. Businesses, however, should use Facebook pages, not personal profiles.


The Problem with Business Profiles

When a business uses a personal profile instead of a page, it changes the way they interact on Facebook. Businesses want to reach as many people as possible. They might become friends with lots of people, including strangers, scammers, and even hackers. This can expose your personal information to a wide audience without you even realizing it.


Privacy Risks

A big problem comes from a Facebook setting called "friends of friends." If you’re friends with a business profile, and you share something meant for your friends only, it might also be seen by the business’s friends. This could mean your private posts are visible to hundreds or even thousands of strangers. Do you want all those people to see pictures of your family or know your personal details? Probably not.


Businesses and Bad Actors

Businesses don't always check who they’re friends with. They might connect with bad actors who are looking to steal information. This puts your data at risk. You might think you’re sharing something privately, but it can end up in the wrong hands.


The Right Way to Connect

If you want to follow a business on Facebook, use their official page. Pages are designed for businesses and have different privacy settings that protect your information better. You can like and follow these pages to stay updated without risking your personal privacy. A Business page typically has a list of tabs underneath the profile picture that include additional information about the business, including About, Services, Reviews, Photos, Videos, and more. A business page also gives you the option to Like or Follow the page, A Personal page does not include these tabs.

In short, it’s not ethical for businesses to have personal profiles on Facebook. It mixes personal and business interactions in ways that can compromise your privacy. Always check if a business is using a proper page before you connect with them. Protect yourself and stay safe online by being careful who you friend on Facebook. If you see a business using a personal profile, unfriend them and follow their official page instead. Your privacy is important, and taking these steps helps keep it safe.