Millions of people all around the globe use Facebook to share their thoughts, opinions, and lives with others.
However, the platform can also be a dangerous place to operate if you haven’t taken the necessary security precautions.
When making a Facebook account, it’s a requirement to fill in personal details including your date of birth, email address, phone number and location.
Although Facebook can only use your data in specific ways with your consent, somebody else might do more than that if they somehow gain access to your account.
It’s pretty common for Facebook accounts to be hacked- especially for those who disregard the security level they should be maintaining.
If you have an easy-to-guess password, don’t update your anti-malware software often, or give away your personal information to others, your account can quite easily be logged into by those who know how!
Moreover, many people don’t log out of their social media accounts after use- thereby creating a significant security risk.
In this article, we’ll talk about how to know if someone logged into your Messenger recently, as well as how you can prevent this from happening again in the future!
One of the more common questions that we’ve been asked here at Mobile Tech Addicts is:
Because your Facebook account is solely yours, it’s pretty easy to detect suspicious behavior if you know what to look for.
Here are some of the things that may be a sign that something fishy is going on:
- You suddenly have a longer Friends list, and don’t actually recognize some of the people on the list.
- Your name or other profile details have been changed.
- The Messenger shows chats that you haven’t taken part in, or Suggested People that you have no connection to.
- Your Feed now includes pictures or posts you don’t expect to be on your Feed.
- The uploads from your account show pictures or posts that you never uploaded.
If you can spot one or more of the signs listed above, somebody likely has access to your Facebook account. But how can you prove this?
You have an inkling that someone is trying to access your Messenger, but how do you know for sure?
Follow the steps below to check:
- Open Facebook
- Log in to your account
- There should be a small arrow at the upper-right corner. Click on it.
- Now go to Settings and Privacy, and click on Settings
- Below the General tab, you’ll find Security and Login. Click on this.
- You can see a list of devices on this page. These will tell you which device has logged into your Messenger, and show you the location of that device.
- Click on See More to view the entire list.
- If you see a device in the list that you don’t recognize as yours, click on the three vertical dots to the right of the device and select Not you? At the same time, you can also click on Log out to revoke access to your account.
After logging out of the unknown device, scroll down and click on Log out of all sessions to start afresh.
However, the aim should be to prevent this from happening in the future. How do you go about that?
Firstly, it’s vital to change your password to something that’s harder to crack.
To do this, go to Settings and Privacy > Settings > Security and Login > Login > Change password.
Now, enter your current password and then choose a new password. Make sure to add numbers and symbols to make it more complicated!
After changing your password, set up two-factor authentication.
This extra security measure asks for both your password and a verification code if it notices a login attempt from an unknown device.
Simple go to Settings and Privacy > Settings > Security and login > Two-factor authentication > Use two-factor authentication.
There are three security methods you can choose from: The Authentication App, Security key, or Text message (SMS).
If you select the Authentication app as your preferred security method, you’ll have to download an app such as Google Authenticator or Duo Mobile to generate verification codes for you. Facebook recommends this method.
The Security key is another method you can choose.
The Security key here is an actual security key such as a USB security key that you can use to protect your Facebook account.
Click on Use security key, and then select Register Security Key.
A popup will appear with two options.
One will be an External security key or built-in sensor, and the other will be your phone.
Select the type of security key you want for your Facebook account, and then follow the steps on the screen.
You can also use the Text message method to secure your account.
Click on Use Text Message (SMS) and enter your phone number in the field provided.
This way, Facebook will send you verification codes via SMS to help protect your account from hackers.
You can go one step further and add an extra layer of security to your Messenger to really lock things down.
This can be achieved by setting up alerts that you’ll receive every time an unknown device or browser tries to log in to your account.
To do this, go to Settings and Privacy > Settings > Security and login > Setting up extra security > Get alerts about unrecognized logins.
Now select Get notifications for Facebook and Messenger, and check the box Receive email alerts.
Finally, click on Save changes.
Facebook will notify you whenever it senses a login from an unknown device. This way, you’ll have time to react quickly and protect your account from a breach!
We mentioned above how Facebook can use your information only within certain limits.
On the other hand, anyone else trying to log in to your account might have more sinister motivations.
To be adequately safe online, it’s important to know how someone can use your data (like your phone number), and how important your personal information is.
Anyone trying to get into your account may be doing so to get your private information and exploit it (this is where something like Android Encryption comes in handy as well).
There may be people out there who consider you a target, or who want to take revenge. Protecting yourself on social media becomes very important in this regard.
Another primary reason to take safety precautions online is the rapid increase in cyberbullying and scams.
It’s very common and easy to bully or scam someone from behind a screen, knowing there are very slim chances of getting caught.
We know you love Facebook and don’t want to give it up with all the advantages that it provides, and this is precisely why we’ve come up with all of these ways to help you secure your account!
If you feel something suspicious on your Facebook account once you log in, follow the steps above to verify your instincts.
After you’ve confirmed that someone is trying to log in to your Messenger, log out of all the devices immediately.
Next, change your password to something more substantial and more difficult to guess.
Finally, turn on two-factor authentication using your preferred security method, and enable unrecognized login alerts.
Carrying out these actions should prevent anyone from being able to breach your account easily, and thereby protect your privacy as much as possible!