TECH
04/19/2011 11:57 am ET | Updated Aug 09, 2011

Facebook Debuts New Safety Tools: What They Mean For You

Facebook on Tuesday introduced a suite of security tools aimed at helping users stay safe while socializing online.

The Facebook Blog details these "social solutions to safety," which include new safety resources for families, and expanded social reporting tool, plus a few advanced security features.

Facebook has redesigned its Family Safety Center and added more content to educate parents, teens and children about safety and privacy on the site. A downloadable teacher's guide to social media in the classroom will be coming soon.

Facebook has also improved its Social Reporting Tool, which launched in March as a means for users to flag wall posts and photos that were spammy, inappropriate, dangerous or offensive. The tool gave users the option of notifying "a trusted friend" on Facebook, in addition to the Facebook Safety team. Given the success of this method, Facebook is making the tool available for all content posted on Profiles, Pages and Groups.

The social network has also improved its option for secure browsing via HTTP. For example, writes Bejar, "if you start using a non-HTTPS application on Facebook, we automatically switch your session back to HTTPS when you're finished."

An all-new feature, called Two Factor Authentication, is in the works and will require the user to enter a code when logging onto Facebook from a new device. Facebook hopes to protect accounts from unauthorized access by unknown users.

These security enhancements come a day after Sophos issued an open letter to Facebook, demanding automatic privacy defaults for new features, stricter screening of app developers, and mandatory HTTPS security.

Do you think Facebook is on the right track with its new safety tools? Weigh in via our quick poll, and share your thoughts in the comments. Then, check out our slideshow of 9 Facebook Privacy Tips.