The BuddyPress User Profile Visibility Manages gives following controls to the users.
- A user can show/hide his profile in Members Directory
- A user can hide/show his profile in directory searches
- A user can hide/show his last active time
- A user can make set his/her account to following status:-
- Everyone: Everyone can see his/her profile
- Logged In Users Only: Only logged in users can see his/her profile
- Friends Only: Only his/her friends can see/access his account
- Only Me: That’s private. Only the user and the super administrator can access his/her profile
- A user can allow/block friendship requests
- Depending on the settings, the user will not be visible anywhere( if they choose so), even will be hidden from widgets etc.
So, that is a mix of privacy + visibility or you can say, it allows your users to have preferences over what they want.
Here is the Profile Visibility Settings:-