This photograph taken on March 23, 2022, shows the logo of US social media platform Facebook displayed on a tablet in Lille, northern France. (Photo by DENIS CHARLET / AFP) (Photo by DENIS CHARLET/AFP via Getty Images)
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Why You Need to Delete, Not Just Deactivate, Your Facebook Account
Facebook doesn't provide the services it does out of goodwill — it counts on being able to collect, mine, and monetize every scrap of data it can from its users. The Cambridge Analytica scandal was one such case where the private data of tens of millions of users was misused for political reasons.
Although disabling your account makes it impossible for other people to look up your account or follow your timeline, the company keeps your data and still lets you use Messenger. While disabling an account may be a good option for someone looking for a temporary break from Facebook, it's not a permanent solution for your privacy concerns.
Deleting an account, on the other hand, completely severs your ties to Facebook, meaning you will not be able to access Messenger, your account, photos, or any pages you have created or administrated. However, during the deletion process, Facebook will give you the opportunity to download a copy of your data, including any photos you have uploaded.
Facebook takes 30 days to process the deletion, during which time your account is essentially deactivated, meaning you have a 30-day grace period to reactivate your account. After that, your account and information should be deleted from Facebook's servers, serving the purpose of protecting your data from being shared and monetized.