Your Facebook, Gmail, Twitter account has been hacked? Here's what to do to get it back or have it deleted

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Matthew Wilhelm Kapell
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With billions of users, Facebook, Twitter and Google are some of the most used services in the world. Obviously, under these conditions, the accounts linked to it are a prime target for hackers. If you have had one of your accounts hacked, be aware that recovering it may not be possible, and it may be too late. But you can always try to delete it to limit the damage. Recovering your account is difficult, the steps can be long, but know that nothing is ever lost - as long as you go quickly.



How to recover your Facebook account

Has your Facebook account been stolen? If it is really very recent, it is possible to recover it by resetting the password. If you are using a smartphone, launch the app, press "need help?" », then « forgotten password », in order to change the password. This will be sent to your recovery email address, or by SMS. If you are using a computer, the process remains the same, except that you will just have to go to the Facebook site, and click on “Forgot account information” and “Find your account”. Finally, don't forget to choose the "Disconnect all other devices" option to "eject" the hacker from your account.

If you unfortunately cannot change your password, the procedure will be more complicated. You will have to report the hacking of your account to Facebook, without the guarantee that the platform will return it to you. First go to the "report a hacked account" page, then enter your email address or phone number to find your account. Facebook will ask you to enter the most recent password you used to access your account. Facebook will then analyze your recovery request, and if necessary, offer you to create a new password.

If you still have control of your Facebook account, but are suspicious and think someone else has access to it - for example, if you see posts on your page that weren't from you - you can also go to the same page. You will then be asked to explain what brings you - "I found a post, message, or event that I did not create"; “Someone else broke into my account without my permission”; "I found an account that uses my name and photos." Then, Facebook will launch a procedure to verify your account: it will ask you to change your password, then to select recently liked pages or recently added friends who do not come from you, or to check your recent consultations, in order to to delete those that still do not come from you.



If none of these methods work, you can contact Facebook support directly for help. Finally, you can also ask the site to delete your account outright, and also ask your friends to report it as hacked - a mass report will thus speed up the process, which otherwise can be long.


How to recover your Google account

Your Gmail account is inaccessible, its password having been changed? Do you think you have been hacked? To recover your account, you will also have to give certain security information to Google, then wait a few days. On the Gmail login screen, click on "help", then "account recovery", and "secure a hacked account", which will take you to a page dedicated to account recovery. If you've turned on two-step authentication, and your account is linked to your backup phone number or email address, Google will send you a code to sign in and then change your password. Otherwise, especially if the hacker has changed the account recovery information, Google will ask you when you created your account, the last time you logged in, the last password used, as well as email addresses of contacts to whom you write regularly. The web giant will then verify the information provided, then, often after a few days, will send you a message to a backup e-mail address that you have indicated to it, in order to allow you to reset your password. Once you have control of your account again, don't forget to activate 2-step authentication!

To check that a hacker does not have access to your account without you knowing it (he has not changed your password, but still accesses your emails), go to Gmail, in "Account Google”, then in “Security” and “Recent security events”. You will have before your eyes the list of recent activities of your account (places and dates of connections). Google itself will explain to you that if “elements seem suspicious to you”, you should on the field “secure your account”, by modifying your password.



 

How to recover your Twitter account

It's basically always the same approach, whether it's Facebook, Google, Outlook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. In the case of the latter social network, in case of hacking and inability to connect, go to the "support center" of Twitter in "connection problems", then enter in the form your name of account, and your email. Your request is then forwarded to Twitter, and you will have to wait several days before the site allows you to create a new password. But to reset your password like this, know that you will need your email address. If the hacker changed the address in the account info, Twitter will likely take longer to analyze your request, and you may need to contact Twitter directly…

 

Secure your accounts

If one of your accounts has been hacked, take the opportunity for a moment of introspection, and ask yourself the question: how did the hacker find your password? Either he will have guessed it because it was too simple, or he will have recovered it thanks to software or a flaw in the platform. May this be a lesson to you, in order to truly secure your account, and to adopt good digital hygiene!

The advice in this kind of situation is common sense advice, but it is worth repeating: change your passwords regularly, do not click on dubious links, activate double authentication so that your connection is not possible only via a secondary code sent by SMS to your smartphone, and finally.. use passwords that will be difficult, if not impossible, to crack. On this last point, I explain in another article how to shield your password, or here how to use passphrases, which are more effective than the sum of uppercase, lowercase, letters, numbers and special characters. 

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