By now, most of you have probably already heard about Danny Brown’s unfortunate weekend. Although no lasting damage was done because of the time and effort Danny puts into building relationships, it is alarming that someone could hack into his Facebook account, pretend to be him and try to cause mayhem.
What’s even more alarming is this is one of our own. Danny is an intelligent man who knows his way around social media (understatement). He’s not someone absent-mindedly falling for those phishing scams that are all over Facebook. If it could happen to him, it could happen to anyone.
Luckily, Facebook has a few security features that can help keep you in control of your account and personal information or notify you in the event of a security breach. Under Account Settings, there is a Security tab where you can adjust your personal Facebook security settings. This is where you can control log in access to your account.
Here is an overview of Facebook’s security features to keep your data safe:
Always enable secure browsing. It encrypts all your activity on Facebook which makes it harder for anyone to access your information on Facebook without your permission.
Facebook can notify you of a log in from a previously unrecognized device via email to your default email (the one you use to log in) or text/push notification on your mobile device. I recommend turning on at least the login notification emails. Unless you’re logging in from 15 different computers each day, you won’t get backed up with emails.
If you want to take it a step further, you can require login approval before being able to access your account. When you try to log in using an unrecognized computer, you’ll have to enter a security code that Facebook will text to your mobile phone. This definitely makes it harder for unauthorized people to access your account, but can be disastrous if you happen to be travelling abroad or if something happens to your phone.
People always worry about third-party applications and the security of their Facebook account. With App Passwords, you can securely log into apps using this generated password instead of your account password. The downside is that it might disable some apps that can’t receive security codes and lock you out of those apps.
Once you log in securely into your account from a previously unrecognized location, Facebook will give you the option of naming that location as a recognized device. Once recognized, Facebook will not notify you of log in attempts from that device. This section lists all your recognized devices and the dates you gave them access. You can remove devices at anytime by clicking “Remove.”
Now, this is my favorite section! It shows you all your active Facebook sessions. It tells you the device name, date accessed and approximate location. The “current session” is always the one you’re currently using on Facebook. If you notice any unfamiliar devices or locations, you can always end the session by clicking “End Activity.” It will log the other device out. I travel a lot, so I’m constantly checking this section before and after I travel (at least one to three times a month). It’s a good idea to check this section a few times a month just for verification purposes.
There you have it! While nothing can keep you completely safe from a determined hacker, you can make sure that you and your account have the best possible defense. What other tips would you recommend to keep your Facebook account safe?