How to delete Facebook

Take control of your data

Deleting a Facebook account

After the Cambridge Analytica scandal, where millions of Facebook users had their data harvested without their knowledge or consent, there’s been a growing base of users that have been trying to figure out how to delete Facebook. If you want to wrestle your personal data from the hands of Facebook, we’ll help you do just that.

However, Facebook understandably doesn’t want to let your data go – which you’ve likely noticed if you’ve ever spent time digging through your account settings. However, with a little effort, you can back up your personal data, then completely erase yourself from the social media site.

If you’d rather keep your Facebook account to keep in touch with friends, but don’t want your data shared with app developers, you can disconnect your Facebook account from third-party websites. If you’ve made your mind up, and you’re ready to go completely nuclear, we’ll show you, once and for all, how to delete Facebook.

Downloading Facebook data

It's wise to back up your data before deleting your account. It might take a while for the process to complete – particularly if you've uploaded a lot of photos and videos

1. Download your Facebook data

If you’ve been using Facebook for a while, you might have hundreds of photos and videos saved on its servers, as well as thousands of posts and comments. Facebook also stores information about where you've logged in, dates and times you’ve clicked on ads, and your account status history.

Before you delete Facebook, save a copy of all this by clicking the down arrow in the Facebook title bar, selecting ‘Settings’ and clicking ‘Download a copy of your Facebook data’. You won't be able to retrieve this once your account is gone.

Social Book Post Manager

Social Book Post Manager is a Chrome extension that lets you mass delete photos, posts and tags, making it easy to erase your footprints from Facebook

2. Delete your photos and posts

After you delete your Facebook account, it can take up to 90 days for all your posts and photos to be removed. If you don't want your information to hang around, get a head start by erasing everything yourself first.

Social Book Post Manager is a plugin for Chrome that enables you to delete multiple Facebook posts at once. Back up your data using the instructions above, then install the plugin, navigate to your Facebook Activity Log and choose a specific filter (such as 'posts you're tagged in').

Then, just click the Social Book Post Manager icon and search for a particular text string and/or date range. Posts that match your criteria will be highlighted in yellow, and clicking the ‘Delete’ button will erase them. Take care – there’s no way to restore them once they’re deleted.

Confirming Facebook account deletion

Once you've entered your password, there's no going back

3. Delete Facebook for good

Ready to banish Facebook to the annals of your personal history? Well, once you’ve backed up all your data, visit Facebook’s account deletion page (Facebook isn’t keen on letting you do this, so it isn’t easily accessible through the settings menu) and select “Delete my account’

It can take 90 days for everything to be erased from Facebook’s servers, but it will be inaccessible from the moment you click the button.