Facebook has changed your email address without telling you

Facebook has changed the email on your profile, replacing your real email address with the @Facebook.com email you never use.

Bad Facebook! In yet another sneaky change made without telling anyone, Facebook has switched the email shown on your profile, replacing your real email address with the Facebook-provided email you never use. No biscuit!

So when friends come to your Facebook profile looking to remind themselves what your email address is, they'll find your email listed as cnet.reader@facebook.com instead of the Gmail, Hotmail or Yahoo address you specified.

A small change -- and easily fixed -- but a significant one nonetheless. Facebook has taken a lot of stick for changing the way the service works, like when it introduced Timeline . But this is the first time, to our knowledge, that Facebook has changed information you supply about yourself.

I'm going to say that again: Facebook has changed the information you provide about yourself which is intended to be displayed to others. That's a very big difference from changing the way you scroll through photos or moving the home page about a bit.

Imagine if Facebook changed your job title, or your name, or your photo. Not good.

Will the change affect your day-to-day life? Probably not, unless you use your Facebook page as a contact point for people you don't know -- for work, say, in which case messages intended for an email address you actually use will be diverted to the Facebook messages system. The problem is that messages from people you don't know get filtered into the Other folder in your Facebook messages, without notifying you.

How do I fix this? Couldn't be simpler, old chum: click on your name in the top right, click About on the left under your profile picture, scroll down to the Contact Info box and click Edit. Next to each set of your details, there are two drop-down boxes specifying who can see each bit of data and whether it gets displayed on your timeline. Change your @Facebook.com address to Hidden from Timeline, and click Save at the bottom. Done!

Is this another sneaky move from Facebook or did we sign away our privacy the moment we signed up? Tell me your thoughts in the locked-down comments or on our frighteningly open Facebook page.

Tags:
Software
About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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