Many people worldwide have had their Facebook account hacked. Unfortunately, this can happen even when you’re careful and take the necessary security precautions. When someone hacks your Facebook account, they can access your privacy, safety, and security settings, read your messages, create posts, etc.
If your Facebook account has been hacked, you’ll be happy to know there are several ways to recover it. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll first explain how to tell if your account has been hacked. Then, we’ll provide what you can do to access your account and ask for help.
Is Your Facebook Account Hacked? The Common Signs of a Hacked Account
In some cases, hackers can access your Facebook, or other social media account without you realizing it immediately. But the sooner you take action, the better the chances you’ll regain control over your account. So, it’s important to notice the warning signs that could indicate your Facebook page has been hacked. Here are some of them:
- You can’t sign into your Facebook account.
- You received an email informing you about a password reset which you didn’t request.
- There are comments, ads, or posts on your Facebook page that you didn’t make.
- You received notifications about random people accepting your friend requests.
- You found unknown locations in “Where You’re Logged In.”
- Family members and friends informed you they received suspicious messages from your Facebook page.
- You noticed changes to your profile (personal information, privacy, safety and security, birthday info, etc).
- You have a lot of unknown names on your friend list.
When a hacker accesses your Facebook account, they may be able to access your bank account or other sensitive information. That’s why you should act fast and prevent more significant issues.
How Can You Recover a Hacked Facebook Account if You Still Have Access to It?
If you suspect a hacker has accessed your Facebook profile, but you can still sign in, you’re in luck. There are several ways to regain control over your account. Here they are:
Change Your Facebook Password
The first action you should take is to change your password and lock out hackers.
The steps you’ll need to take depend on whether you’re using Facebook on a computer or a mobile device.
If you’re using a computer to access Facebook, here’s what you need to do:
- Launch your browser and go to your Facebook account.
- Select your profile picture at the top-right corner.
- Press “Settings & privacy.”
- Choose “Settings.”
- Select “Security and Login.”
- Navigate to “Login” and select “Change password.”
- Enter your current password and enter your new one twice.
- Save the changes.
Those using the Facebook mobile app should follow the steps below to change their Facebook passcode
- Open the app.
- Tap the menu icon. It’s the three-line button right next to notifications.
- Scroll down and choose “Settings & privacy.”
- Tap “Settings.”
- Select “Password and security.”
- Choose “Change password.”
- Enter your current passcode. Then, type your new one and re-enter it to confirm.
- Choose “Update password.”
Check Where You’re Logged In
Facebook offers a valuable option that allows you to discover if someone has signed in to your account. In a few clicks, you can see from which locations and at what time you (or someone else) accessed your profile. If you see any suspicious activity, you can immediately end those sessions and prevent hackers from taking control of your account and sensitive information.
Computer users can follow these steps to see where they’re signed in:
- Go to your Facebook account.
- Press your profile picture at the top-right corner.
- Choose “Settings & privacy.”
- Select “Settings.”
- Click on the Security and Login tab on the left.
- Check the sessions under “Where You’re Logged In.”
- If you see an unknown location, press the three dots on the right, and choose “Not you?” or “Log out.” The former will take you through extra security steps to ensure your account’s safe, while the latter will simply log out the intruder.
If you’re using a mobile device to access Facebook, here’s how to see where you’re logged in:
- Open the Facebook app.
- Press the menu button (the three lines).
- Press “Settings & privacy.”
- Select “Settings.”
- Choose “Password and security.”
- Review your current and past sessions under “Where You’re Logged In.” If you notice something suspicious, you can either take extra steps to protect your Facebook account or log out of specific sessions.
If you suspect someone has been logging in to your Facebook account, you should inform Facebook.
Here’s what to do if you’re using your computer:
- Launch your browser and visit this page.
- Select one of the options and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process.
If you’re using Facebook on your phone, follow the steps below to report to Facebook that your account was hacked:
- Launch the Facebook app.
- Press the three-line icon and go to “Settings & privacy.”
- Choose “Settings.”
- Go to “Passwords and security.”
- Under “Get Help,” choose “If you think your account was hacked.” The Facebook support team will guide you through the reporting process.
How Can You Recover a Hacked Facebook Account if You Don’t Have Access to It?
If someone has hacked your account and you can’t access it, chances are they’ve already changed your passcode. Unfortunately, this usually means you’re locked out, and recovering your account is much more difficult at this point.
Facebook has account recovery protocols that can help you regain access to the account. However, these protocols are exactly what hackers use to take control of people’s Facebook and other social media accounts. Therefore, you can try the protocol, but it doesn’t mean it will work.
Fortunately, there are still some steps you can try to regain control of your hacked account:
Try Accessing Facebook on All Your Devices
Many people use Facebook on multiple devices. If you can’t access your account from one device, you should try another device you often use. The hacker may have forgotten to log you out of other devices.
If that doesn’t work and you can’t access your hacked account from any device, it’s time to begin the recovery process.
Find Your Account
The Facebook platform offers a convenient option that lets you get back into your hacked account.
Before accessing the page, ensure that you’re using a device that you normally use to access Facebook. Then, go here and enter the phone number or email address connected to your account. You can also use your name or account URL. If you see your account, select it to begin the recovery process.
Facebook will now send a verification code to your phone number or email address so you can reclaim your online identity. If a hacker changes this data, you can press “No longer have access to these” or “Cannot access my email.”
Change the Email Address
You should now see a form that you need to fill out to change your email address. Facebook support will most likely ask for a photo of your ID to confirm your identity. You’ll receive an email with a link to reset your passcode.
After this, it may be wise to update your profile, make it more secure, and minimize the risk of your account being compromised. Here’s what you can do:
- Set up two-factor authentication.
- Create a secure password.
- Disable third-party apps connected to your Facebook.
- Set up alerts for unauthorized login attempts. These alerts will allow you to act fast in the event someone tries to access your account on your behalf.
- Remove payment methods from your Facebook page.
- Double-check your privacy preferences and update them if necessary.
- Don’t open any suspicious links because they could be viruses or scams.
- Learn to recognize fake accounts on Facebook.
- Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know or people with whom you don’t have mutual friends.
If you want to ensure your profile is secure and be better at managing your account, you should consider using a password manager. The best password managers will save and safely store your passwords for different accounts, apps, and services, including Facebook.
That way, you don’t have to remember passcodes for all your accounts and pages. Instead, you can have peace of mind knowing you’re protected. Password managers provide strong encryption for your data and keep it safe, even in case of a hacking attempt.
In case you can’t access your hacked account and Facebook support can’t help, you may need to create a new account. It may be wise to alert your family members and friends that your original account was hacked. That way, they’ll know that any message, post, or photo coming from that profile may be compromised and contain a virus.
Protect Yourself From Hackers
If your Facebook account has been hacked, it doesn’t mean all is lost. You may be able to regain access, but you need to act fast. When it comes to social media account security, it’s always better to think in advance.
You can make your profile more secure by managing your account carefully. Update your security data regularly and be cautious about opening photos, links, or messages from an unknown person.
If you want to go the extra mile, keep your photos and profile information (birthday, phone number, email, etc.) private, and don’t become Facebook friends with someone you don’t know.
Whether your Facebook account has been hacked or you’ve come across someone pretending to be you, you should always report it.