Three tools to manage permissions and settings for all of your online accounts

You’ve signed up with Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Dropbox, Pinterest, Stumble, Foursquare, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Flickr, etc. (and multiple times for some). You’ve also granted many third party services at least some sort of access to these, and, let’s face it: you’ve forgotten about most of them, and you’re probably NOT going into each and every one of these accounts to unsubscribe, audit app permissions, or update your info, etc.

Wouldn’t be great if you could simply manage your accounts all at once from one place? Three free tools let you do exactly that: AdjustYourPrivacy lets you adjust privacy settings, MyPermissions helps you intelligently audit your third party permissions, and is a must if you use Facebook.

Finally, Bliss Control will not just manage the permission settings, but will let you do a range of things including changing usernames, passwords, email and email settings, bios, deleting accounts, changing mobile settings, recovering passwords, changing profile pictures, editing connected accounts, and of course, it also lets you change 3rd party permissions.

One thing needs to be mentioned upfront: all of these tools are, in some sense, a collection of links, in that every change you make will be on the Facebook website or Twitter or whatever other service is. You will not need to give your authentication info to any of the services themselves.

1. MyPermissions

As the name suggests, it is geared towards editing (and auditing) the permissions that other services or apps have in your online accounts. Comes in the form of a web app and an iOS app (you can read about the iOS app here).

MyPermissions ScreenshotTwitter Permissions Screen

Clicking on the service in the list (screenshot above left) takes you to the permissions page for each service, such as the Twitter permissions page pictured above right.

MyPermissions also offers free browser extensions (Chrome, Firefox) that will notify you in real time on your desktop whenever an app obtains or changes Facebook privileges.

MyPermissions Chrome extension alerts

The browser extension really shines when auditing Facebook permissions, though. It will show a list of apps and let you edit the specific privileges granted to each (see screenshot below).

MyPermissions Chrome extension for Facebook

2. Bliss Control

Has a lot wider scope than MyPermissions. Not only will it let you change third party app permissions, ‘Bliss Control’ provides an all-in-one handy interface to do any number of things: change your bio, password, username, email, email settings, mobile settings, change profile picture, change design, change connected accounts, change 3rd party permissions, or even delete your account.

Bliss Control Screenshot

List of available functions (below).

Bliss Control Screenshot2 - actions

What’s unique about Bliss Control is not just the number of things you can do from the interface, but the interface itself, which is stylish yet very intuitive and easy to use.

3. AdjustYourPrivacy

A service similar to ‘MyPermissions’ above, geared towards changing privacy settings. It supports a larger number of online services (20 services at the time of this writing, compared to 12 with MyPermissions’). However, ‘AdjustYourPrivacy’ does not have the same kind of bells and whistles that ‘MyPermissions’ has, in terms of an iOS app, Chrome extension and the really nice way the latter handles auditing the permissions for individual Facebook apps.

AdjustYourPrivacy Screenshot

AdjustYourPrivacy does include a ‘personal’ search tool intended to show you the extent that your own personal information on various services is publically available.


In Conclusion:

If you want to take control of your accounts and who and access them, give these services a try. MyPermissions is a must if you are an avid Facebook user (get the browser extension absolutely!), or if you need the iOS app, but Bliss Control is also terrific, because of it’s rather excellent interface, and because it lets you do so many more things that simply manage permissions.


 
 
 
Samer Kurdi

Samer Kurdi

Has been reviewing software since 2006 when he started Freewaregenius.com
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  • http://carbonize.co.uk Carbonize

    Someone has a sense of irony. Services for protecting your privacy that require access to your login details so they can check your privacy thereby giving them full access to your private information.

    • Norma

      Carbonize’s comment seems to make a very valid point. I’m interested to read FreewareGenuis’s response. Why should we trust any of these recommended “services” any more than we trust Facebook et al (which in my case is not one bit!).

  • Samer Kurdi

    Carbonize cements his reputation as the most incisive and value-added commenter on this site. :)

    But the answer to the question is that these services DO NOT request any authentication info from you. I did mention above that they all function as a central repository of links, sending you to the URL where, for example, you might change your password with Twitter or whatever. To do so you would have to log in, but you would be logging in with Twitter, not with, say, ‘Bliss Control’ who sent you there.

    I hope this makes sense. If not, try one of these services and see. how they work. You will find that they do not ask you for authentication information at all.

    The one thing I am not so sure about is the ‘MyPermissions’ app for iOS, as I have no iOS device to test it on, but I assume it works in the same way.

    • http://carbonize.co.uk Carbonize

      OK the second two as I now see are just bookmarks to the relevant pages to which I have to say WHY? As to MyPermissions I’d love to know how it is accessing my Facebook settings without asking me for permission. That I do find worrying.

      • Samer Kurdi

        I assume you mean the MyPermissions Chrome extension?
        You are granting it privileges to access the data being served by pages (see below). Which is different from giving it access to your Facebook (i.e. if you were not logged in it couldn’t see anything).

        Mypermissions chrome privileges

        • http://carbonize.co.uk Carbonize

          You do realise it’s also a Firefox add on ;)

          You do have to worry though as you are granting it access to every bit of information in your web browser and who’s to say what it is doing with it.

          • Samer Kurdi

            What’s Firefox? ;)
            I am sure I am granting numerous other extensions access to the same thing. If I worry too much about these things I won’t have anything much to write about.

            • http://carbonize.co.uk Carbonize

              So you’ve updated th epost but still only say that MyPermissions does a Chrome extension with no mention of the Firefox add on;)

            • Samer Kurdi

              Added Firefox!