What To Do If Your Facebook Account Gets Hacked?
Facebook is one of the most popular social media sharing sites on the planet. They currently have more than 1.79 billion active monthly users, and the number continues to climb. Fans enjoy sharing photos, videos, and snippets of their lives with the easy to use and globally recognized forum.
With popularity like that, Facebook naturally attracts a lot of attention from everyone, and hackers have taken a liking to this channel as well. While you won’t see mass breaches on Facebook like you have with many of the other social media sites (like Pinterest and DropBox), there are still incidents reported of hacked Facebook accounts. The question people often have is: How was my Facebook account hacked?
More often than not, a Facebook account gets hacked when people aren’t being smart with their Internet usage. You can have the finest security system in the world installed in your home, but if you don’t turn it on, it won’t do you any good, right? Let’s go through what you can do if your Facebook account was hacked, and then we’ll show you how to protect yourself against attacks in the future.
How Do I Secure a Hacked Facebook Account? Start at the Beginning!
Hackers like to do a thorough job of stealing your personal information. That’s why they will often head straight for your email account either before or after they’ve hit a social media account. People innocently leave private information like bank account numbers, passwords, and social security numbers in their emails, leaving them vulnerable to hacking ploys.
As soon as you have a suspicion (or even before, really), run this free tool to see if you have any compromising info in your email accounts. The anti-intrusion algorithm will clear out all of your folders from this harmful data and alert you if anything comes up in the future.
Practice Password Safety
If your Facebook account was hacked, you want to regain control of it immediately. This means changing your password to one that the hacker doesn’t know. Go to the General settings page, and change your password. Don’t just add a number to the end of your old password; that’s an invitation for another hack attack. Instead select a password that is difficult to crack or guess. Generally this means nothing obvious that a hacker could guess (like common passwords such as 1234, qwerty, etc.) or public information about yourself like your cat’s name or your birthday. It should also be something more complex, incorporating numbers, letters, and symbols. Here’s an example of a strong password: %lrG9sm!Kd.
Report the Attack
Facebook takes security very seriously, and they want to hear about it if you’ve been hacked. If you have a Facebook hacked account and you can’t get into your account but you still have access to your email account, use this form to file the report. Facebook will help you regain access.
Check Active Sessions
Was my Facebook hacked? If there’s a suspicion that your account has been hacked, you should check where your account is being logged in from and when. This can be done in the Security section under your Settings menu (click on the little arrow at the far top right hand side of the screen and select Settings).
Scroll down to find the Where You’re Logged In section. Here there will be a list of the location and device type used to log into your account as well as a time and date. This can be extremely informative if you know when and where you use your account (which most people generally do). Any unfamiliar times, locations, or devices should be removed by clicking the End Activity link to the right of that entry.
You’ll need to do more than this, however, to keep your Facebook account secure.
Check Activity Logs
Facebook also keeps recent activity logs, so you can see what’s been going on in your account. Once again, open the main drop down menu by clicking on the arrow at the top right hand side of the screen, and select Activity Log. Here you can browse all the actions taken on your Facebook account. If you see activity such as posts, reactions, Likes, shares, or other actions that you didn’t take, this is a clear sign that your account is being controlled by someone else.
Do a thorough job of this by scanning your messenger app and private messages too.
Check Payments Activity
Hackers frequently use other people’s accounts to buy items and have them shipped to them instead. Check your recent payment history to see if there were payments made that you were unaware of. This section can be found under the main Settings menu.
In general, any unfamiliar activity on your Facebook account is a red flag and should be reported immediately.
Protocol if Access is Denied
If you cannot get into your Facebook account at all, use this link to recover your password. Facebook will send you an email to help you get back into your account, so make sure you can access your email before trying this step. If other details like your login info have been changed or you don’t have access to that email account any longer, find out what you can do here.
Practice Safe Surfing, Please
Now that you’ve got a handle on your account, it’s time to take protective measures to ensure that this doesn’t happen again. Here’s how to keep your Facebook and other online accounts safe from hackers:
- Use Login Approvals: Go to the Security section under the general Settings menu. Click on the Login Approvals section, and you’ll be asked to activate this feature. Facebook will send you a confirmation code. When Login Approvals is active, you will have to enter a code every time you want to log into your Facebook account from another unknown browser.
Login notifications are also available from Facebook if you don’t want to deal with login codes constantly. With notifications, it won’t stop someone from logging into your account, but it will let you know when someone does. Find Login Alerts just above the Login Approvals section under the Security tab of your account settings.
2. Review app privileges: Go through your applications and remove anything fishy. Hackers design apps with viruses implanted, so when you approve of an infected app, your account will automatically be infected. Go to the apps section under your Settings menu, and remove any apps that might be suspicious by clicking on the X next to that application.
3. Secure other accounts: Especially if you share passwords between your accounts, you are vulnerable to multi-account hacking. If you suspect that one of your other accounts has been hacked, here’s what to do to regain control of Gmail and other accounts. For the future, never reuse passwords from one account to another. Instead create unique codes, and use a password manager to keep track of them all.
4. Protect your devices from malware: There is so much free antivirus software available, there’s no reason not to have it on your computer. Safeguard your mobile devices as well because these can also be infected with viruses.
5. Let LogDog clear out any private info that you don’t want exposed to hackers or the world. This anti-hacking tool is available for iOS and Android devices, and it will instantly shut down a hacker’s attempts at taking over your life.
6. Use two-step verification on all of your accounts. It’s an easy way to add a solid layer of protection between you and the bad guys.
Follow these tips, and stay safe when you’re online.