According to the Battlefield 3 community manager, zh1nt0, the squads can only be managed on Battlelog and not in the actual game.
This means you can no longer create squads/make private squads while in game. You can only join or leave squads.
Hundreds of Battlefield fans are dissapointed and many are cancelling their PC pre-orders right now. Nothing is yet confirmed on how consoles will work.