One minute you are chatting with your friend. Next, there is a strange face on your friend’s profile picture. Hacked! A few hours ago, you were online, surfing through Facebook and chatting with friends, but now you do not have access to your account anymore? Hacked! But lucky you. Today, we will show you the latest way to recover a hacked Facebook account and how to stop this nightmare from happening again.
Fun fact: there are about 2.9 billion people on Facebook, and close to 160,000 user accounts get hacked daily. That is not precisely a fun fact per day; if you ask me, I would say it’s a “get worried” fact. Yes, you should be worried; your account might be the next one to be hacked. From celebrity accounts to just any account, we really cannot tell who is saying “oh no!” next. The number of friends you have does not matter; everybody is a target.
Facebook is no doubt the biggest social media platform around. Almost everyone you know has an account on Facebook. Is it your old neighbor? Check on Facebook, sure you will be able to find him or her. Such a place swarming with people. Facebook, over the years, has experienced multiple data breaches.
How do you know you have been hacked?
Though there is almost everyone on Facebook, but not everybody is active on Facebook. So for someone who does not come online regularly, figuring out your account has been hacked might not be soon enough. But here are some red flags to look out for, just to be sure.
You have been hacked when there is a change in your Facebook profile details that you did not make. It could be anything from your profile picture, name, or your email address.
When you get a prompt from Facebook telling you to confirm if you are the one that logged in on an unknown device. Did you? You did not? Then you have been hacked.
You suddenly find yourself logged out of your account and cannot login back in.
You discover some messages are sent to people that you had not chatted with recently, then you are hacked.
Recovering hacked Facebook account with a changed password
If your account was hacked and the password changed, you will get the “incorrect password” error when you try to log in. To recover such an account, just reset the password.
How to reset a Facebook account password
To reset your Facebook account password:
- Open Facebook
- On the login page, click on forgotten password.
- On the next page, enter the phone number or email address linked to your account to search for it and continue the recovery process. Now click on search.
- Once your account is found, there will be a list of options through which you can receive your verification code. Choose the one that is most okay for you and click on continue.
- Enter the verification code sent to you in the space provided in the next window and proceed to reset your password.
How to recover a Hacked account without a linked email or phone number
If you are unfortunate to have had your email and phone number changed too by the hacker, there are two ways you can recover your account.
Recovering account via trusted contacts
- Open Facebook login page.
- Click on the forgotten password.
- Select No longer have access to this
- Enter an accessible email or phone.
- Opt to ask trusted contacts to help reset your password. Click on reveal contacts.
- Do the contact verification process and then click confirm. A link will be shown where your friends have to go to get codes for you. You can text them the link.
- Enter the codes in the spaces provided, then click Continue.
- Now, proceed to reset your Password.
Note: you won’t’ be able to use this recovery method if you haven’t’ added trusted contacts before now.
How to set up Trusted contacts on Facebook
Trusted contacts can help you get access to your account in situations where you are not able to log in. To set up Trusted Contacts, follow the below steps.
- Open the options menu on Facebook and then click on settings.
- Click on Password & security under accounts.
- Under setting up extra security, click choose the option that says 3 to 5 friends to contact if you get locked out.
- Proceed to select your desired contacts and then save.
Recovering by Reporting hacked account
Just in case you didn’t’ set up Trusted contacts, here is another way.
- Report your account as compromised here.
- Search for your account either through the email or phone number linked to it.
- Enter a previous security detail you remember and follow the steps that proceed.
How to secure your Facebook account
The safety of your Facebook account now lies in your hands. You can further secure your account by doing the following.
- Log out of all devices you might have logged in on.
- Change your Password.
- Enable two-factor authentication.
- Avoid installing apps from untrusted sources. Hackers can access your Keylogging data via such software.
- When you login into public devices, do not store your password.
- Avoid clicking on links you do not trust or logging in on untrusted sites.
How to log out your Facebook account from all linked devices
- Open your Facebook and log in
- Click on the options button to open the drop-down menu. Look out for the three vertical lines icon.
- Click on Settings from the expanded list.
- Under Accounts, click on Password and Security. You should have some devices where your Facebook account is currently logged in, or you logged in with before under Where you’re logged in.
- Select see all from the header to show all the list of devices.
- Navigate down and click on LOG OUT OF ALL SESSIONS, and you will be logged out from all devices. You can decide to selectively log out from devices too if you are sure some of them are yours. Just click the three dots beside the device and click on log out.
Once you have logged out of all suspicious devices, you should proceed immediately to change your account password to prevent someone from accessing your account again with the password they used before.
Two-factor authentication (2FA)
Two-factor authentication (2FA) which is in all sense the same as two-step verification, is a two-proof multi-factor authentication used to prevent unauthorized access to accounts.
Facebook two-factor authentication
Before now, access to a Facebook account required just a single-factor authentication (SFA) process. Meaning with just a single factor, your password, in this case, you can verify ownership of an account and access it. So anyone with your password can hack your account. Highly susceptible to phishing attacks.
Facebook implemented two-factor authentication to add an extra security layer. So now you need your password and a code that will be generated upon login request. So even if a hacker somehow got your password, without the next piece of authentication, the account cannot be accessed.
How to Enable two-factor authentication on Facebook
Turning on two-step Authentication for your Facebook account is navigating Settings > Password & security > Two-factor authentication.
- From the Facebook options menu, open Settings.
- Click on Password & security under accounts.
- Under Two-factor authentication, click on use two-factor authentication.
- Select the security method you want from the options either via Authentication app, Text message, or security key, then click continue.
Without hacking, there wouldn’t be any security improvements. Loopholes do not exist until a hacker has found and used one. Only then can appropriate security improvements are made to counter it. So being informed is really an advantage to the safety of your social media accounts.