For many people, Facebook login does not cross their minds as an important online security issue worth considering. However, for those whose accounts have been hacked or compromised in one way or another, they take Facebook login with the seriousness that it deserves.
It is not lost to us that recently more than 90 million Facebook accounts may have been hacked. Hackers simply exploited the Facebook website’s code linked to the “View As” feature. The “View As” feature enables a Facebook user to see how their profile looks like to other users. Hence, they were able to “steal access tokens” and thus effectively take users accounts. Facebook fixed this by disabling the “View As” feature.
Using Facebook login for online web services could be risky
Another feature that can easily give away your personal information is the Facebook login that allows you to log in to other websites using your Facebook profile. This is done using a protocol called 0Auth. Thus you’ve seen websites that allow login via 0Auth provide you with the “Login with Facebook” option. Though the Facebook login brings about convenience as you only use a single password, it exposes you to some security risks.
Security risks associated with the Facebook login
Phishing websites may pose as legit companies and use the Facebook login to harvest your information. Clicking on the like button on sites gives your public information to the webmasters of the websites. Hence, your data can be used to study your personality as well as your social behavior. Also, the Facebook login feature can be misused by malware that hijacks Facebook sessions.
Facebook login, as well as Google login and any other social logins may pose some risks. They make it easy for cybercriminals to gain access to your personal information. Look at it this way, instead of hackers trying to hack your numerous website accounts; they only need to hack your Facebook or Google account and gain access to all your websites linked to your social account. In fact, social accounts do list all the sites connected to them.
And so today, I’ll be sharing on how you can secure your Facebook account from unwanted guests.
How to secure your Facebook account
1. Use a Strong Password
Securing your Facebook account begins with creating a password that’s difficult to guess. I know you are wondering about how you can achieve this. Anyway, it’s possible provided that you follow the best password practices. You’ll need to use more than 14 characters for your website. Make sure that your 14 characters consist of upper case letters, lower case letters, two numbers, and at least one unique character such as @#$%^&* and any others.
Do not share your password with anyone, and also avoid using a single password for multiple websites. For more on how to create a unique password, you can read my beginners guide on the basics of internet security.
2. Set login approval/ Second Factor Authentication
It’s advisable to set up double verification for your Facebook account. Anytime you login to your Facebook account, Facebook sends you a newly generated code to your smartphone. You must insert the code to gain access to your account. Such a setting improves your security in that even where a person gets your password; they won’t be able to gain access to your Facebook account because they won’t have the generated code. Also, it alerts you of any login attempt to your Facebook account.
To use the two-factor authentication, go to More and tap ⇒Settings ⇒tap Security and Login ⇒tap Use Two Factor authentication.
You can then set up login approvals by entering your telephone number and your code. After which you can tap done, and then finish up by tapping close.
Henceforth, you get notified of any login attempt originating from any phone, computer or browser you haven’t used before. Facebook will require you to approve the login with the login approval code that they send you. Also, you can get the login code in your Facebook app. Furthermore, you can also approve a login with a security key if you’ve got one.
3. Set Login alerts
Another excellent way to secure your account from unwanted guests is to set up login alerts. That way, Facebook will notify you of any suspicious activity. If anyone logs into your account with a new phone or computer, Facebook notifies you. To set login alerts, proceed to More ⇒tap Setting ⇒tap Security and Login ⇒tap Get alerts about unrecognized logins. Choose how you’d like to get the notifications through Facebook notifications, email, or messenger. In case you get such notifications, and you are not the one who logged into your Facebook account, you should immediately inform Facebook and let them help you to secure your account.
4. Protect your profile picture
Your profile picture is a vital identification tool on social media. You should make sure to protect it to prevent any other person from creating a fake account with your real name and profile picture.
To protect your Facebook profile picture, you can use the Facebook profile picture guard. Just proceed to the Facebook login page and log into your Facebook account, open your Facebook profile and then click on the current profile picture. Avoid clicking on (Update Profile Picture). After the profile picture opens, click on options at the bottom of the image and select “Turn on Profile picture guard.” A blue shield appears on your profile picture and no one can share or download it henceforth.
5. Log yourself out of Facebook on other devices
It is crucial to find out the devices that are logged in to your Facebook account. That way you can remove any devices you do not recognize or the ones that you do not use anymore. To know all the devices you are logged in proceed to the Facebook Security section. Once there, you’ll see “Active Sessions” clicking on it will not only show you all the places you are logged into Facebook but also all the devices that are logged in as you. You can click on the sessions, and then click log out.
6. Make friends Authenticators
Do you know that if Facebook notices a login or hacking attempt on your Facebook account, they react by locking down the account? Indeed, you won’t be able to login into your account until you have verified with them that its your account. Many people weren’t able to successfully prove ownership of their account as the recovery process used to be complicated and tedious. However, Facebook has introduced a more straightforward way to regain access to your locked account. They allow you to choose up to 5 trusted friends who can help you to verify and restore access to your Facebook account.
You can make friends as authenticators by going to Settings ⇒Security and logins, Choose friends to contact and select any of your 3 trusted friends who will send you the verification codes to help you authenticate and regain access to your account.
7. Secure yourself from Phishing attacks
Phishing attacks have become common, and many Facebook users have found themselves on the receiving end. A phishing attack usually takes the form of a fake message purporting to originate from Facebook or any other legitimate website. The message requires you to send your credentials or financial data. Be warned that Facebook will never send you an email requesting your personal data or financial information. In case you receive such an email with a link redirecting you to any website resembling Facebook, don’t ever submit your data to such a site. It only aims at stealing your sensitive personal data.
Excellent tools to keep you safe online
I’ve just given you the seven ways that you can use to secure your Facebook account and avoid being hacked or losing your data to dangerous Cybercriminals. I’m obliged to share with you some excellent online security tools that will not only help you to secure your Facebook account but also all your data when you browse online.
Antivirus solutions will help protect your Computer system/PC from viruses, malware, spyware, Trojan, rootkits, spam attacks, phishing attacks, and many other cybersecurity threats. They protect you from known and unknown threats from the internet, USB devices, DVD/ CDs. Other benefits include not only a quick scan of removable devices connected to your computer to detect threats but also removing any unknown threats found.
Antivirus provides two-way Firewall that checks both incoming and outgoing data for threats. It also includes password protection, block Ads and spam websites. Parental control is another excellent feature that comes with the leading antivirus solutions. The feature helps in monitoring your children’s activity on the computer.
Best antivirus solutions include:
Virtual Private Networks
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have become an online necessity. If your hearing about VPN for the first time, know that it is a tool that provides a secure tunnel where you packets of data transit safely. VPNs employ robust encryption such as AES 256-bit encryption that is uncrackable to secure your data from a hacker, snoops, identity thieves and many other cybercriminals. Hence you can use Public Wi-Fi without the fear of getting hacked.
Apart from securing your data, a VPN will also prevent network throttling by your ISP, enable you to access Geo-restricted content, and even block annoying ads. Also, a VPN could help you get the best prices when you shop online. You see, most companies that sell online give different offers for the same product to different regions. Thus using a VPN, you can spoof your location and shop from anywhere in the world and get the best deals. That’s why you must always use a VPN when you browse the internet.
Some of the best VPN services include:
Even though, Facebook login brings about convenience; it may pose a threat to the security of all your websites that you log in with the Facebook login. The successful hacking of your Facebook account gives the hackers access to all the accounts linked to the Facebook account. The same applies to other social accounts like Gmail login as well as Yahoo login, or LinkedIn login. You can secure your Facebook account by following the advice in this article. Antivirus and VPN solutions are some excellent tools that can help you to stay safe online.