A reader has fallen victim to a Facebook hacker.
“Someone changed my FB password and my email so I couldn’t access my own account. They used my profile photo and represented themselves as me, saying I had found a puppy in a dumpster, but the puppy needed vet care and that I didn’t have the money for a vet they made a GoFundMe account, and my friends had donated $400.00 before I found out about it. I could find no way to contact Facebook so I attempted to open a new account- they said they’d email me a conformation code, but I never got the code, so I was never able to complete getting a new account- the same thing happened when I tried to get the code via text on my cell number. I am 83 years old, and I went to both the city and county police and asked them if they had a cybercrime unit and both said they did but spent most of their time on child porn, and they were not interested in my problem. Obviously, when I lost Facebook, I also lost Instagram and Messenger. What on this earth can I do?”
Starting a new Facebook account is not the best route to go when stuff like this happens. You should be able to retrieve your Facebook Account by following these steps:
Follow this link: https://www.facebook.com/help/1306725409382822
You’ll open this helpful wizard that walks you step-by-step through retrieving your account. You can also report an issue happening with a friend.
You’ll answer a few questions, and Facebook will advise you on what to do next.
If you can still access the phone number or email connected with the account, Facebook can retrieve your account that way. If not, you may have to provide identification.
If Facebook sends you a code and you don’t receive it, make sure to check your junk or spam folders just to make sure it didn’t get filtered out.
I know this is distressing. The same thing happened to my Instagram account when I foolishly used public WiFi at a book show once. But you should be able to recover it fairly quickly if you follow the steps listed.
To prevent it from happening again, make sure you enable multi-factor authentication on your Facebook account. That way, if someone logs into your account from a new device, they’ll have to jump through some hoops to prove they’re actually you.
Once you’re back into your account, click the drop-down arrow next to your profile picture at the top-right and choose Settings & privacy.
Then select Security & login.
Scroll down to Use two-factor authentication and follow the instructions to turn it on.