How to turn off active status on Facebook and Messenger to appear offline everywhere you’re logged in

Friends holding smartphones sitting outside texting
If you want to appear offline on Facebook, you need to change your active status settings. Catherine Falls Commercial/Getty Images
  • You can turn off your active status on the Facebook website, Facebook mobile app, and Messenger mobile app.
  • When your active status is turned off, you will appear offline even when you’re online.
  • You can also choose to appear offline only for certain people that you select.
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Facebook may be responsible for putting the word “social” in social media, but there are times when you don’t want – or don’t have time – to engage with friends.

If you want to log into Facebook without your friends knowing you’re online, you can easily turn off your “active status” so you appear offline.

There are three different places where you can control your active status: on Facebook in a web browser, in the Facebook mobile app, and in the Facebook Messenger mobile app.

How to turn off active status on Facebook in a web browser

To turn off active status and appear offline on Facebook:

1. Open Facebook in a browser and log in, if you’re not already.

2. Click the circular Messenger icon in the top-right corner.

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Click on the Messenger icon in the corner. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

3. In the Messenger drop-down, click the three-dot icon at the top.

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Click the three-dot icon at the top of the Messenger sidebar. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

4. Click Turn off Active Status in the drop-down menu.

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Select the ‘Turn off Active Status’ option. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

5. A pop-up will appear asking if you want to Turn off Active Status for all contacts, Turn off Active Status for all contacts except, or Turn off Active Status for only some contacts. When you click the latter two options, a box will appear where you can enter the names of specific people.

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Choose who you want to hide your active status from. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

6. Click OK when you’re done.

How to turn off active status in the Facebook mobile app

1. Open the Facebook app on your phone.

2. Tap the three horizontal lines (called the “hamburger menu”) in the top-right corner on Android or the bottom-right corner on iPhone.

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Tap the icon of three horizontal lines. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

3. Tap Settings & Privacy, and then tap Settings.

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Tap ‘Settings’ in the ‘Settings & Privacy’ drop-down. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

4. Tap Active Status under the Privacy section.

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Select ‘Active Status’ at the bottom of the ‘Privacy’ section. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

5. Turn off Show when you’re active by moving the slider to the left and then confirm by tapping Turn Off in the pop-up.

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After swiping the slider to the left, select ‘Turn Off’ in the pop-up. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

How to turn off active status in the Facebook Messenger mobile app

1. Open the Facebook Messenger app on your phone.

2. From the main Chats page, tap your profile’s avatar at the top-left of the screen.

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Tap your profile icon in the upper-left corner. Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

3. Tap Active Status.

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Select ‘Active Status.’ Grace Eliza Goodwin/Insider

4. Turn off Show when you’re active by moving the slider to the left and then confirm by tapping Turn Off in the pop-up.

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