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How to Hide Online Status on Facebook and Appear Offline Instantly

Once you read through this guide, you can learn how to to hide online status with Facebook Messenger. This information can help you to accomplish this using Android phones, iPhones, and PCs.

how to appear offline on Facebook

Hello everyone and welcome. It is Frankie here again with some more helpful tips and tricks to let you master the tech you use every day. Today I want to show you how to turn off active status on Facebook and disappear (or become a ghost).

With just a few simple steps and actions, you can appear offline in Messenger.

With the method that I have put together, no one can tell that you were online on Messenger at all, the last time that you were online, or even if you have read the messages they have sent or not.

You can use a method like this to be a ghost on Facebook Messenger like the “Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.

Not sure what I’m talking about, don’t worry I can explain.

The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man was one of the most famous and iconic ghosts from The Ghostbusters movie. It was a giant white creature made of marshmallow and dressed like a sailor. He was the mascot for the company who grew as large as skyscrapers in the film. Now you remember, I’m sure. You likely can’t forget it.

be a ghost on Facebook Messenger like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man

When I was a kid, I was more than a little obsessed with The Ghostbusters, and so I continue to take inspiration from these memorable ghosts and infuse them into the names of methods I develop to accomplish tech tasks:

I know – I know. The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method is a little wordy. I will work on a shorter title as soon as I can.

The main two reasons that you want to read this guide are:

  1. You have something to hide from someone. No matter what dirty deeds (affairs, flings, shady business) you might be into, you need to stay hidden.
  2. You just live a private life and do not need everyone knowing what you are doing all the time.

In either scenario, you can use the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method as the ultimate solution. It is divided into (easily digestible) parts.

  • Becoming Invisible on Facebook Messenger
  • Hiding Your Status in Facebook Chats
  • Hiding the Last Seen Information on Messenger
  • Turning Off Read Receipts

And there are even some other little tricks you can employ to really become a ghost.


Frankie’s Take:

With the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method, no one can know the moves that you make on Messenger. There are some programs for spying, like mSpy, that can make it possible to read Messenger interactions. If you are a victim of this level of breach to your device, not even God can save you.

Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method: 3 Steps to Become Invisible on Both Facebook and Messenger

Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method

Unlike many of the other chats out there, including powerhouses like WhatsApp, Messenger has a feature which allows users to appear offline to everyone or only to select contacts. Though this can help in this ghosting process, it is not enough for complete invisibility. You still need to hide important secondary information like the last time you logged in.

There is one thing that you must know before moving forward – Facebook Chat and Facebook Messenger are linked but are not the same service.

Messenger is the juggernaut of the two, allowing you to make video calls, send voice notes, and allows you to chat with people that might not be your friend on Facebook. In fact, you do not even need a Facebook account to use Messenger.

Chat has much fewer features and allows you only to chat with those already designated as your friends and will only work if you have a Facebook account.

Because these two services are synchronized, the messages that you exchange on Messenger can be accessed and viewed through Facebook Chat as well.

No matter if you have iPhones or Android devices, if you follow the steps I am about to share, you can become completely invisible on Messenger and Facebook Chat.

So let’s get to it!

1. Turn Off Active Status on Facebook Messenger (iOS/Android app)

It would make sense that the first step you should take in becoming a ghost is to remove the indicator displaying when you are online or offline in Messenger.

Accomplishing this process is easy – it works the same for both iPhones and Android devices.

  1. Open Facebook Messenger
  2. Click the icon with your profile picture
  3. Find the Active Status option and swipe it to OFF

Turn Off Active Status on Facebook Messenger

This step allows you to disappear to your active contacts. From this point on, no one can see when you are online. Deactivating this feature comes with a sacrifice, however, as you will no longer be able to see when anyone else is online, either.

Additionally, take a moment here to remove the flag from this option. This will hide the time you last accessed the app. This boosts your total transformation into a ghost even more.

Another important thing to note: you must disable this setting on EVERY device you use Messenger on.

You should take a minute and read the complete guide to Hiding Your Last Active Status On Facebook Messenger.


Frankie’s Take:

This is just the first step of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method. So far, you have diabled your active status on only Messenger. If you sign in on Facebook, you appear online. Let’s keep going and make you invisible from Facebook chat as well.

2. Appear Offline on Facebook.com (Using a PC or Mac)

The next step into you transformation towards the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man is to become invisible on Facebook chats.

This procedure is pretty simple to accomplish and can be done the same way using either a computer or Mac.

  1. Open Facebook.com from your PC or Mac
  2. Click on the Messenger icon
  3. Select Options (three dots)
  4. Select Turn Off Active Status (three up from the bottom)

Appear Offline on Facebook.com

One of the interesting features here is that you can either choose to remove active status of all contacts, or only a few, or only for a selected few. Choose which best applies to you and then confirm with ‘Okay’ to remove your active status.

If you select the first option, you no longer appear online to anyone.

By choosing the second option, you hide your status to most but a few selected individuals.

The third option here is similar to the second, but instead you are choosing which contacts you wish to keep from seeing your online status.

It is important to note that by doing this, you will again not see who is online. You will deactivate the last access time stamp in this phase as well.

Frankie’s Take:

Small step by step, you are slowly transitioning into the ghost I told you that you’d become. Let’s do a quick recap – you have now deactivated the Active Status on Messenger and now you have deactivated the Active Status in Facebook chats. Next, we must prevent read confirmations in conversations.

3. Remove the Confirmation of Read Messages

You are well on your way through the conversion process – so don’t stop now.

There is a little hiccup here, however. Unfortunately, both Messenger and chat do not have settings that can hide the confirmation that you have seen and read a message in a conversation.

Worry not, as I have 3 solutions that can help you to keep from revealing you have received or read messages they have sent.

Before this, however, you need to understand how read alerts work for Messenger and Facebook in general:

  • White mark: message being delivered.
  • White mark with blue tick: message delivered.
  • Blue mark with white tick: message received.
  • User profile photo mark: message read.

Remove the Confirmation of Read Messages

You should take a minute and read the complete guide to Messenger tick: Understanding The Meaning Of Facebook Messenger Icons.

Understand it a little bit better? Good. Now let’s get to the solutions.

A word of caution: If someone is spying on your Messenger account, all your efforts to remain invisible when you’re logged into the app, would be futile. Today you can buy any type of phone tracker for a few dollars that are capable of collecting any kind of information on your device.

a. Read Messages from Push Notifications

The most direct and simplest way to bypass a read notification on your service is to read new incoming messages from push notifcations that appear in the banner of your mobile device.


Frankie’s Take:

iPhones are limited to only showing 162 characters in this preview setting, meaning that if you were to receive a long message, you cannot view it in its entirety.

b. Set Airplane Mode to Read Messages

Once you activate airplane mode on your phone, you can open Messenger and read all received messages without changing the status of these messages. It is critical that you completely close out of Messenger before deactivating airplane mode.


Frankie’s Take:

Once you close the app, do not just go to the home screen. Close it through the multi-task window so close it entirely so it is not running in the background.

c. Chrome Extension ‘Unseen’ (Facebook on PC or Mac)

Hiding read confirmations on Messenger or Facebook chats on a PC or Mac is much more complicated than with a smartphone. Obviously there are no push notifications to read here and airplane mode either doesn’t exist or won’t get you where you want to go.

Fortunately, there is a Google Chrome extension known asUnseen’. This can block read alerts and all message status indicators.


Frankie’s Take:

I have no idea why Facebook or Messenger has yet to offer a solution for removing read notifications altogether like WhatsApp or iMessage. Whatever their reason, these 3 methods can save your ass sometime.

d. Log off from your account

Another thing you can do to go offline on Messenger from your computer is to sign out of your account. This is a simple yet effective operation.

To do this, proceed as follows:

  1. Sign in to Facebook from its Web version
  2. Click on the (▾) button in the upper right corner, select Settings and Privacy > Settings > Security and Access.
  3. Now, click on the Show More heading located under the Devices you are logged in from option
  4. Click on the Log out from all sessions option (located at the bottom of the screen)
  5. Press the Leave button to close the open sessions on the devices you were logged in to.

Don’t forget, however, that when you return to Facebook, you’ll need to re-enter your login information.

CONGRATULATIONS!! You have successfully completed the transformation and you are as much a ghost on these services as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man.

The Ghostbusters Method – Catching Ghosts on Messenger

The Ghostbusters Method – Catching Ghosts on Messenger

So, tell me friend, what does it feel like to be a ghost?

Now, no one knows when you are online, reading messages, when you last logged in – it is a nice feeling, is it not?

But just like the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man found out, for every ghost there is a Ghostbuster looking to hunt you down.

Unfortunately for you, tracking your movement and activity through your phone is easier than you might think. Seriously. A little software installed on your device is enough to make Peter, Egon, Ray and Winston all green with envy. If you don’t recognize those names – seriously, watch the movie.

If someone really wants to know what you are doing on your phone, they can with software like mSpy.

The Takeaway

I have provided three steps to follow that allow you to hide Online Status on Facebook and make yourself invisible.

If you follow these three steps that I included here for the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man Method, you can achieve it. You have to do these steps both for Facebook Chat and Messenger, as these are connected – but separate – components of Facebook.

You can begin by seeing your offline status on Messenger, then on Chats through a computer or Mac. Finally, remove read indicators from all of your chats.

I talked a little about the Ghostbuster Method, which gives someone a chance to see what you are doing on your phone through Messenger, Chats, and hundreds of other potential applications.

I am always working on solutions to protect and ensure your privacy, so be sure to check back in regularly for new information to help you out.

Before I send you on your merry way, I should tell you that if you have interest in keeping the contents (and your actions) on your smartphone private from prying eyes, you might want to look at my article detailing advanced espionage techniques to spy on a phone – and how to protect yourself.

Have questions or concerns? I can help. Leave a comment below and I will get back with you. You should also take the time to follow me on other platforms like YouTube for video tutorials and clips, my Facebook page, or the Pinterest profile we created.

I give you a big hug,

P.S. There are several other Messenger features and tricks to learn. Check them out to become a real master of Messenger.

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About Frankie Caruso

I'm Frankie Caruso. I'm a professional amateur in that ugly business of social media, instant messaging apps and computer security. I help all those frustrated people who call themselves digital illiterates to understand something about this confusing digital world.