If you’re not a celebrity but have had your Facebook account hacked by cybercriminals, you might ask yourself, “Why would someone want to steal my Facebook account?”
However, it’s actually rather typical to have your Facebook account compromised. Someone can desire access to your Facebook account for a variety of reasons. Forcing your Facebook account to distribute spam with your friends online is one key reason, along with obtaining your personal information like your passwords and other credentials.
Social media accounts being hacked are now commonplace, for whatever motive. This is why it’s crucial to understand the procedures you can follow to restore your Facebook account after learning it has been compromised.
With advice from multiple cybersecurity experts, this is a step-by-step tutorial on recovering a Facebook account that has been hacked, along with the next actions you should take to make sure it doesn’t happen again. (Also be sure to check out our guidelines on how to secure your identity, personal information, and property, as well as how to ban and unfriend people on Facebook.)
1. Check to make sure your account really has been hacked
Go to the upper right-hand corner of your Facebook page and click on the arrow there to reveal a drop-down menu if you notice any suspicious activity on your Facebook account, such as changes to your name, birthday, email address, or password; new messages sent to people you don’t know; or posts appearing on your timeline that you did not post.
A new menu will appear after selecting Settings and Privacy > Settings. Select Where You’re Logged In, then Security and Login. Your account may have been hacked if a login occurs from a device that you are unfamiliar with.
2. End the intruder’s session
To log out or not be you, click the three vertical dots next to the device login that you don’t recognize. In any case temporarily, this logs the invader out of your account. By doing this, you can continue to regain and secure control of your account while limiting the harm the invader might cause.
3. Alert your contacts
It’s possible that if your account has been compromised, others on your friends list have been contacted. You’ll need to warn them about clicking any links or downloading any programs you sent them via Facebook email, Facebook messages, or wall posts while the hacker was in charge of your account.
4. Change your Facebook password
It is simple to change your password if the intrusive party has not already done so. Scroll down to Login, click it, then click Change Password, then click Security and Login once again.
Cosette Jarrett, a web marketing consultant located in Salt Lake City, advised changing your passwords if you use the same one across different websites. Your accounts at other websites may also be at danger if your password has been hacked on one site.
5. Reset your password if the intruder has changed it
It’s not as easy as just going into your account settings and changing your password since hackers frequently alter it once they have gained access to your account.
By clicking the Forgot Your Password option under the Facebook login, you must change your password. You’ll have to enter information to prove your identity, such as the email address you used to sign up for Facebook, the phone number linked to your account, your Facebook username, or your name and the name of a friend you have on Facebook.
If you think the person who hacked your account updated any of your profile information, the last choice might be the best.
6. Report your compromised account
You must report your account as compromised if advertisements or spam are being sent from it. You can do this by clicking this link (opens in new tab). You will get more information from Facebook on how to fix the problem after reporting it.
7. Check for malicious apps
Once you are in control of your account once more, go to the Settings menu where you changed your password or checked for suspicious logins, and select the Apps option from the left-hand menu. Find any apps you did not add yourself and click the X next to them to remove them by going through the list.
8. Secure your Facebook account
Being the victim of an account hack on Facebook is not the end of the world. However, having it occur to you can serve as a helpful reminder to make sure your account is as secure as possible.
Facebook itself provides some security recommendations (opens in new tab). You should log out of Facebook when using a computer you share with others, use a special password for Facebook that you do not use for any other websites, run the finest antivirus software on your computer (even if it’s a Mac), and be cautious when clicking links and downloading apps and files. While connected into your Facebook account, you may also perform a Security Checkup (opens in new tab).
Even if you haven’t been hacked, it’s a smart idea to beef up your Facebook security. Consider reducing the amount of apps you utilize because external apps are often the cause of Facebook account hacks.
Even if you trust the people sharing the content, avoid clicking on suspicious links or advertisements because it’s conceivable that they have been hacked. Always make sure your mobile operating systems and desktop web browsers are up to date. When you’re finished using Facebook for the day, make sure to sign out.
For other social networks, the same holds true. User accounts on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other platforms have all been hijacked in different ways. As always, practice caution and common sense when using the internet, and everything should be OK.