The afternoon of September 28th 2018 brought in a wave of shock for 50 million Facebook users, when they found themselves logged out of Facebook!!
In one of the worst data breach attacks in the history of Facebook, over 90 million users on Friday afternoon, were forced to log out and login back to their accounts. The step was initiated as a precautionary measure by Facebook to reset the access tokens for over 90 million of its users, as hackers managed to exploit a vulnerability in Facebook coding.
For this social media giant, its ‘View As’ feature proved extremely vulnerable, as hackers managed to log into Facebook accounts of other people, by stealing access tokens. The View As feature was basically meant to allow users to see how their profiles appear for other users. Upon learning about this exploit, Facebook immediately reset the access tokens of more than 50 million of its registered accounts.
So, while the whole world is busy browsing the internet for answers to HOW and WHY this data breach happened, it’s better to spare sometime to read about immediate actions you can take, to prevent your own data from getting breached:
#1 Reset Your Password
In case your account was one amongst the 50 million Facebook accounts that got hacked on Friday and the hacker managed to change your password, DO NOT PANIC! You can still try your best to regain access to your account by clicking on “Forgot your password?” option under your Facebook login.
Start by finding your account by entering the primary or secondary email address, you had used for registering with Facebook. Once you are successful in finding your account, you can easily choose to Reset Your Password. However, this process of password recovery holds true, only if you continue to have access to those email addresses.
Just in case, you no more access those email ids but would like to reset your password, you can always use the “No longer have access to these?” link displayed at the bottom of Reset Your Password popup, in which case, facebook will ask you for an alternate option to verify your identity.
#2 Change Your Password Immediately
Even if you were lucky enough to not have your account compromised, as a precautionary measure it’s better to change your password before it’s too late.
All you need to do is to click on Security and Login under Settings and scroll down to Login > Change password. Try to choose a stronger password this time and something that is unique only for your Facebook account.
Once you have reset your account with a new password, it is advisable to log out of all sessions, provided the fact that your security settings and contact details are up to date.
#3 Check Passwords of Other Accounts
Registering with Facebook requires you to enter an email ID and often times, you tend to use the same login details for logging into Facebook as well. Thus, while you reset/change the password of your Facebook account, it is a good move to change the password of other accounts also that have the same login details.
#4 Check Your Privacy & Security Settings
Here are few steps you can take to improve your privacy and security on Facebook:
- Update contact details, mobile numbers and email addresses under General
- Limit the visibility of your posts by selecting a comfortable Privacy setting and allow only friends to see your posts.
Boost up your security measures by opting for notifications for unrecognized logins and select only couple of trusted friends for recovery of account, in case your account gets locked out.