What Will Happen If I Deactivate My Facebook Account?

Most Facebook users log in on a regular basis, updating statuses, uploading photos and commenting on friends' pages. If you find that you're no longer a regular user, or you won't be accessing your account for some time, you have options for maintaining your account. Account deactivation allows you to temporarily refrain from using your Facebook account with the option to return and regain access to your profile and content. Account deactivation is a simple process that can be easily reversed. It offers Facebook members the flexibility to leave the social network and return when ready.

Content Visibility

Facebook account deactivation is a process that takes full effect immediately upon request. Your member profile and all associated content disappear from Facebook instantly once your account is deactivated. Photos, videos, status updates, links and questions you're tagged in will no longer show your name. Other Facebook members will no longer have the ability to search for your profile, and none of your content will appear in Facebook search results.

Content Storage

If you opt for Facebook account deactivation, your profile information will be saved for future use. If, at some point, you opt to reactivate your Facebook account, all of your content, profile information, photos and friend lists will be contained within your account. Your pages will appear exactly the same way they did before you left. Your content and profile will appear in search results and Facebook members will have the ability to locate you using Facebook search.

Deactivation Vs. Deletion

Account deactivation differs from account deletion in several ways. Namely, accounts that are permanently deleted are forever gone. There is no option to restore profile information or associated content. If you choose to return to Facebook in the future, you'll be required to create a new account, build a new friend list, create a new profile and upload new pictures. Facebook members who plan on returning to the site should opt for account deactivation over account deletion.

Multiple Deactivation Attempts

Facebook members who make multiple attempts at account deactivation will begin to encounter a 24-hour wait period between deactivation request and fulfilment. This is done to ensure that the deactivation process is not used in lieu of actions that would be better suited. Account deactivation should not be used to safeguard the privacy of your account. Adjust your privacy settings to restrict the visibility of your content. If you've deactivated your account more than once, you'll be required to wait 24 hours to log in to your account each time you reactivate it.

How To Deactivate

Deactivate your Facebook account by selecting the "Account Settings" option from the drop-down menu under the "Account" tab in the upper-right corner of any page. Click the "Deactivate" link that appears at the bottom of the resulting page. Provide a reason for account deactivation, enter your legacy settings and confirm your request on the following page. Reactivate your Facebook account by returning to Facebook and logging in with your e-mail address and password.

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About the Author

Carolyn Luck has developed an extensive technical background in social media, online marketing, event planning, business development and small business management while serving as editor of "iMarketing Magazine." She has been published in "IPTV Magazine" and has contributed to many websites. Luck holds a bachelor's degree in sociology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.