5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

facebook logo 300x300   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It RecoverableTo most of us this is the biggest nightmare. You want to log into your Facebook account and your password no longer works. In the worst of cases, someone managed to hack your account and changed your password. So what do you do? You can find the answer here, but these tips only work if you took precautions.

This article shows you what you can do NOW, while you can still log in, to secure your Facebook account and be able to recover it easily if you should ever lose access in the future.

1. Update Your Contact Information

A fairly easy way to recover your Facebook password is through alternative contact information, such as email addresses and mobile phone numbers. Obviously, this only works if you have access to the respective accounts. Thus you should make sure your contact information is up to date.

The most simply way to receive an overview of your current contact information is on your About / Info page. The direct link is facebook.com/your_username/info. In the bottom right you should see a box called Contact Info. If the information is incomplete or no longer up to date, click the Edit button to update it. Remove any email addresses or phone numbers that are out of date and add your current email addresses and mobile phone numbers.

Facebook Contact Information   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

When you attempt to edit your contact information, you will be re-directed to the respective section in your General Account Settings, which you can also access directly to update your data. You can update your email address/es here and your mobile phone number/s here.

To change your personal data, you need to enter your Facebook password. This ensures that no one can change your information if you forget to log yourself out. When you add an email address, a confirmation will be sent to your primary address. As a security precaution, this confirmation includes a link that allows you to cancel the request of adding a new email. In other words, having an email address on record means you are doubly secured, as you will be notified of changes and can prevent them, while at the same time being able to use that address to recover access to your account.

Facebook Update Email Address   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

To add a mobile phone number, you will be instructed to send a text message to a Facebook number. A confirmation code will be returned to your mobile, which you need to enter on Facebook to verify that you own the respective phone number. Note that this only works with selected carriers and if your mobile carrier is supported, they will charge a fee for sending the text message.

Facebook Update Mobile Settings   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

Your personal contact information can later be used to recover your account, as explained in this article: How To Recover Your Facebook Account When You Can No Longer Log In

2. Enable Secure Browsing

Facebook can be browsed using a secure connection. While this adds an extra layer of security, the secure connection (HTTPS) is not enabled by default. Go to General Account Settings, click the Security tab on the left-hand side, then click the Edit button to the right of Secure Browsing to access the respective option, or simply click here.

Facebook Secure Browsing   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

If you are wondering about the benefit of HTTPS and how it works, you may be interested in this article: What Is HTTPS & How To Enable Secure Connections Per Default.

3. Update Your Password

One of the biggest risks for getting your account hacked, is having a weak password or using the same password for all your online accounts. Moreover, you should regularly update your password.

Go to your General Account Settings and click the Edit button next to Password or click here. Enter your current password, followed by entering your new password twice. Click Save Changes and don’t forget to update your password manager or note down your password in a secure place, for example a non-digital address book.

Facebook Update Password   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

Need help creating a strong password that you can remember? Have a look at these articles:

4. Enable Login Notifications

To be notified of logins to your Facebook account via email or text message, go to Security Settings as described above and click the respective option or click here.

Facebook Login Notifications   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

5. Enable Login Approvals

To make it extra hard for someone else to falsely log into your Facebook account, you can enable login approvals. This means that every time anyone (even you) wants to log into your Facebook account from a device that was not authorized previously, they will be asked to enter a security code. This code will be sent to your primary mobile number via SMS. Note that this option only becomes fully active after one week. In the meantime it can easily be disabled without actually entering any security codes.

To enable Login Approvals, go to Security Settings as described above and click the respective option or click here. If your browser settings will prevent the option from working reliably, for example because it is set to clear cookies on logout, a respective error message will be displayed. Otherwise, you will see the notification shown below. After reading and understanding it, click on Set Up Now to proceed.

Facebook Login Approval   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

A security code will be sent to your primary mobile phone number. Enter the code to activate login approvals.

Facebook Login Approval Setup   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

Note that you need to update your mobile settings, should you change your phone. Otherwise, you can always log in using a previously recognized computer.

Facebook Login Approval Success   5 Things You Can Do NOW To Secure Your Facebook Account & Make It Recoverable

In a subsequent step, you can also set up a Code Generator for your mobile, to create security codes directly on your smartphone. This option is available for Android only. For this you will need to install the app Facebook for Android. How to set up and use Code Generator will be subject of a different article.

Conclusion

It goes without saying that you should log out of your Facebook account after you are finished using it. You should also be very careful with Facebook apps and where you use Facebook to log into other services. Generally, if you follow some common sense practices, have a strong password that you never share and update frequently, your account should be safe.

What tips did you find most useful to secure your Facebook account? And did you ever need to recover it?

The comments were closed because the article is more than 180 days old.

If you have any questions related to what's mentioned in the article or need help with any computer issue, ask it on MakeUseOf Answers—We and our community will be more than happy to help.

30 Comments -

0 votes

Pavan Somu

This tips will sure makes our Facebook account un-hackable.

0 votes

DJNERD

I think you should have included about ‘security question in facebook,,’..Some use to hack ids by guessing security question.This is Just my view .good article Tina

0 votes

Tina

Thanks for the heads-up! That’s definitely a good one, too. Unfortunately, it seems that it’s not possible to change the security question once you have created one.

0 votes

Ashwin Ramesh

Good read :) Didn’t know about the Login Approvals feature

0 votes

Erika Whiteway

I have been trying to permanently delete my FB acct, using various techniques available on YouTube and elsewhere, with no success.

Any suggestions?

Thanks!

0 votes

Tina

Erika,

That is a completely different question that I recommend you to ask at MakeUseOf Answers.

0 votes

DJNERD

the link is

https://www.facebook.com/help/delete_account

[ here is how I did it.its indeed simple.
1-Go to help
2-Search for ' permanently delete my account ' [ I used that words] :)
See the search results.. SEE the information under ‘Deleting Accounts’
you will see a link with ‘ submit your request here’
When you click SUBMIT YOUR REQUEST HERE > you will be taken to

https://www.facebook.com/help/delete_account

Now follow the instructions.

Hope this one helps you..

0 votes

Tina

Thanks for taking the time to answer the question!

0 votes

outrider420

Thanks everyone for everything…

0 votes

jack

How about, dont use facebook

0 votes

Joel Lee

Wow. I didn’t know that Facebook had these options! The Login Approvals are especially new to me, and I think that’s a cool idea. Will be setting these things up right away. Thanks Tina.

0 votes

Zow

I’m an FB User from India. I’m trying to activate “Login Approval” feature for my account by clicking on the link (https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=security&section=approvals&view) given above but nothing comes, page remains blank. Tried doing it again by logging in after deleting cache and cookies and using incognito mode but same result.
Am I doing something wrong or this feature not available in all geographies or accounts?
All other suggested security features above were already used by me, thanks to MUO.
Please help.

0 votes

Bryan Price

Unless they’ve changed it recently, login notifications have been a PITA, and it prevents some programs like Digsby from working.

0 votes

Zoy sdsa

I’m an FB User from India. I’m trying to activate “Login Approval” feature for my account by clicking on the link (https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=security&section=approvals&view) given above but nothing comes, page remains blank. Tried doing it again by logging in after deleting cache and cookies and using incognito mode but same result.
Am I doing something wrong or this feature not available in all geographies or accounts?
All other suggested security features above were already used by me, thanks to MUO.
Please help.

0 votes

Tina

Did you try to use another browser? Maybe a script is blocked in (I guess) Chrome? Not sure what else you could try.

Login approvals with security codes require that codes can be sent to a mobile phone number. Maybe none of the mobile providers in India cooperate with Facebook on this. That is the only reason I could think of why it would not be available in India. However, rather than showing a blank page, a respective message should show up.

0 votes

Zoy sdsa

Thanks for the reply, yes I tried other browsers and that didn’t work either. I guess FB doesn’t currently support my mobile operator or all Indian operators.

0 votes

Thomas Will

Hello Zoy,

I am in the Philippines and the same here: the Approval feature does not show up (in different browsers and OS).
I checked with friends here and also abroad (Germany and USA) and they don’t have the feature either so the problem is not limited to our “developing” countries.
Mobile is activated on two different networks, https actiavates as well, Login notifiaction also, BTW.

Thomas

0 votes

Tina

I think the problem lies with the service provider, not with the geographical location. Although in some countries, more providers may be supported.

0 votes

Thomas Will

But if the feature is not in the settings: what does it have to do with the provider?
BTW: I was able to activate several phones on FB and I received the codes (only for activating the phones).

0 votes

Thomas Will

Maybe you are right with the providers after all.
I wanted to use my German SIM and FB shows only O2 but no T-Mobile or Vodafone (hey FB, THESE are worldwiede operating companies, O2 is not really…).

To show you that I am not too stupid to make things work: Google has a similar feature, called “2-step verification” under https://www.google.com/settings/security
and it works perfectly with my mobiles.

I don’t know why FB makes things so complicated and weird again…

0 votes

Darrell Thomas

what i did was security login where i put my password in and when i press login i gets a security code sent to my moblie phone so i got security there where its a differant code each time so no matter who got my password the login code aint never the same so my account cant be hacked now woo hoo now try hackers

0 votes

Le Mon

If you had enabled login approval, and if someone knows your password,still they can disable it and login with your facebook account..so not so safe either..

0 votes

Steven Kim

Thanks for the tips!!

0 votes

Owais Kamal

Nice idea till someone steals your cell and hacks your account:P

0 votes

Neeraj

Please help me. I can’t see Login Approval in Account Security section, or anywhere in Facebook.

0 votes

franklyn ifeanyi

please unlocked my acount for me

0 votes

sue hawkins

It would be great to be able to have Facebook phone me with a lost password, but apparently I am one of the last humans without a cell phone. Seems many of their security methods involve having a cell phone.

Why don’t they have any options for people who have no cell phone?

0 votes

Frederick Tayongtong

Hi,
I need your help in regard to security settings, I lost my confirmation code for login notifcation. I can not activate my security setting under login notification, how to retrieve the code, am using netbook, and there was no retrieve button for me to get it again. Please help. Thank you.

0 votes

Paul Fallows

I have https enabled but have a red line through it showing it to be insecure, How do I get rid of the red line and get it back secure.Help Please,Thanks.

0 votes

Paul Fallows

I have a red line through https showing it to be insecure. How do I get rid of this red line. Help Please. Thanks