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The Impact of Meta’s New Link Tracking Option on Facebook and Instagram

Summary

In recent weeks, users of Facebook and Instagram may have noticed new notifications regarding a new link tracking feature available on these platforms. The “link history” option allows users to conveniently keep track of all the links they have visited […]

META aplikacije uvele novu opciju praćenja linkova na Facebook-u i Instagramu

In recent weeks, users of Facebook and Instagram may have noticed new notifications regarding a new link tracking feature available on these platforms. The “link history” option allows users to conveniently keep track of all the links they have visited through the search functionality on these social media applications. However, this new feature also provides Meta, the company behind these apps, with an additional way to enhance targeted advertising.

Meta promises its users that by tracking their visits to various links, it will make it easier for them to revisit those pages in the future. Unfortunately, the implementation of this feature has its drawbacks. With access to users’ link history information from mobile browsers within the apps, Meta will utilize this data to improve its targeted advertising efforts.

While it may seem like many users are only discovering these settings now, a spokesperson from Meta confirmed that these options started rolling out as early as last summer.

How to Disable Link History on Facebook and Instagram?

If you wish to disable the link history option on Facebook, you need to open a link within the app and find the menu with three dots. From there, access the browser settings within the app and look for the toggle switch for “link history.” Turn it off and confirm your selection.

The process on Instagram is nearly identical. Go to the browser settings within the app, find “link history,” and disable the option.

Your link history will be immediately deleted, but Meta states that the process may take up to 90 days to be fully completed. Even if you have disabled link tracking, your previous link visits may still be stored in the company’s archives, which could impact targeted ads within these apps.

Taking Control of Your Privacy

Although disabling the link history option is not enough to fully regain control over your online activity data, there are additional options. Meta recently enabled EU users to completely opt-out of ads on Facebook and Instagram, but with a monthly fee.

FAQ

What is the “link history” option?
The “link history” option allows users to keep track of all the links they have visited through the search functionality on Facebook and Instagram.

How can I disable link history on Facebook?
To disable link history on Facebook, open a link within the app, find the menu with three dots, access the browser settings, and disable the “link history” option.

How can I disable link history on Instagram?
To disable link history on Instagram, go to the browser settings within the app, find the “link history” option, and turn it off.

How long does it take for Meta to delete my link history?
Meta states that the process of deleting link history may take up to 90 days.

How can I regain full control over my privacy on Facebook and Instagram?
For EU users, Meta offers the option to completely disable ads on Facebook and Instagram, but with a monthly fee.

Can disabling the link history option guarantee complete privacy?
No, disabling only the link history option is not enough to fully regain control over your data. Meta has other methods of tracking users’ online activities.