With over a thousand photos uploaded per second, Instagram accounts are targets for hackers aiming for higher scam reach. Here, you’ll know how to recover hacked Instagram account.
Instagram with over 1 billion active users monthly, is the biggest photo and video share social media network. Little wonder the network is prying with hackers and scammers.
- How do you know you have been hacked?
- Steps to recover hacked Instagram account
- How to secure your Instagram account
- Instagram Two-Factor Authentication
- Final thoughts
How do you know you have been hacked?
- If you see a post on your wall that you never posted or any other activity on your account that you didn’t do.
- You no longer can access your account and keep getting the Wrong password error.
- If you ever get an email from Instagram security notifying you of changes made to the email address linked to your account and you never made such changes, hey! You have been hacked. That means someone is trying to cut you off from your account. Quick action is to click on Revert this change in the mail.
Steps to recover hacked Instagram account
If you are too late and your password has been changed, you can reset your account password to be able to access your account again.
One of the latest ways to verify ownership and recover hacked Instagram accounts is through a login link. You might have used it on Facebook before, it’s the same thing here. The login link is a unique URL that is created on request and allows the user to access the account once without a password. So it is a sure option if your account password has been changed. The login link will be sent to your email address or phone number linked to your Instagram account.
To request a Login Link
- Open Instagram. Web browser or mobile, anyone works just fine.
- Be sure you are on the login page for an existing account and not the sign-up page for creating a new account.
- Now click on get help logging in below the space for inputting your credentials. Depending on your mobile OS, it might be different. On iOS you will see forgot password instead, above the login button. Click on it.
- Click on username or phone
- On the next window, find your account by entering the email address, phone number, or username that is linked to your hacked account, then click on next.
- The next window will show options on how you want to receive the login. Click on Send an email if you want it sent to your email address, or send an SMS if you want it sent to your phone number.
- Now click on the link in the email or SMS sent to you and you will be logged into your account directly.
How to change your Instagram account Password
The best thing to do to secure your account when you notice abnormalities on your account that is possibly being performed by a hacker is to change your password. Someone who knows your password can make a lot of changes to your account and even unlink everything about it that says it was ever yours. So the earlier you change it, the better.
To change your Instagram account password:
- Log in to your account on Instagram via mobile or web.
- By default when you open Instagram, it usually opens on the home tab where you see the feeds and stories from all the accounts you are following. Switch to the profile tab by clicking on the circle containing your profile picture at the bottom right corner of the screen.
- On the profile tab, click the options button, three equal and equidistant horizontal lines, at the top right corner of the profile screen.
- Click on settings on the slide-up menu that appears at the bottom half.
- Select Security on the settings menu.
- Now click on Password.
- On the next window, in the spaces provided, enter your current account password to prove you are the account owner about to make changes. Then enter the new password you want to change to, twice to ensure there are no mistakes.
- Now click the tick at the top corner to confirm changes.
Please ensure to keep your password unique, safe and hard to guess.
How to secure your Instagram account
The best form of defense, in this case, would be a heightened defense. You don’t want to go ahead hacking someone else’s account just to keep yours secured; that would be stupid and worthless. Staying in the loop and implementing the latest security features is the best way to secure your account. Below are the ways you can secure your Instagram account to prevent it from being hacked.
- Avoid clicking on links that you are not sure of.
- Log out of suspicious devices.
- Verify emails requesting you to change your password come from Instagram. Phishing attacks can come like face emails looking just like the real thing and hackers can get your details from such.
- Enable Two-Factor Authentication.
- Review your login activity and remove untrusted devices.
How to verify Emails from Instagram
Emails from Instagram is a security feature Instagram has to combat phishing attacks. To verify your emails before taking any action follow the steps below.
- Go to settings and select Security.
- On the Security menu, click on Emails from Instagram. You will see a list of emails sent by Instagram to your email address within the past 14 days.
Now you can compare what you have with what is in your email inbox. If it doesn’t match, then you should delete that email.
How to enable two-factor authentication on Instagram
To enable two-factor authentication on your Instagram account:
- On the Security menu, click on Two-factor Authentication.
- Click on the blue Get Started button at the bottom of the next window.
- The next window shows 3 different options to choose from on how to receive your special login code – via an Authentication app, via WhatsApp and SMS. Toggle-select the option that is convenient for you and a confirmation code will be sent immediately to you via the option you choose.
- Enter the 6 digit confirmation code you received in the next window and click on next to complete Two-factor authentication settings.
Reviewing login activity
This security feature, which is similar to linked devices in Facebook, allows you to see your login histories so you know when someone has accessed your account via a strange device you cannot recognize. From the list, you can either make a device a trusted device or log out of your account from the device. To do so:
- On the Security menu, click on Login activity.
- On the next window, you will see a list of all the devices you have logged in to your account, their location, and the one that is actively logged in at the moment.
- If you see any strange device, log out immediately by clicking on the 3 dots at the right of the device name and then clicking logout.
Instagram Two-Factor Authentication
Two-factor authentication is a new security feature that makes it almost impossible for hackers to fully hack your account. When enabled, logging in to your account will require more than just your password. So even if a hacker can crack your password, without the next ownership verification factor, a piece of code, they will never be able to access your account.
How does it work?
When you successfully log in to an Instagram account on a device, the platform takes note of the device and marks it as a trusted or recognized device. Whenever an attempt is made to log in to the Instagram account from a device that is new and not recognized, with Two-factor authentication enabled, you will be required to input a special login code after entering the correct password.
You can also recover hacked Instagram account by sending a mail to the Instagram support team. This should be a last resort, however, as the process can be a long one.
Sometimes your account can be disabled due to violation of Community Guidelines and not hacked. You will know this from the message you’ll get when you try to log in. You can appeal for your account to be restored, just follow the instructions displayed when trying to log in to a disabled account.