We’ve all had that friend or that random stranger who was complaining literally everywhere that his Facebook account got hacked and then he proceeded to put the blame on the platform developers.
The truth is that for the most part, the problem does not lie on Facebook, but on the Facebook user himself. The question is, how is that even possible? How can someone get access to your account? How many people try to hack Facebook accounts anyway?
You’d be surprised, according to The Telegraph, hackers try to hack Facebook accounts more than 600.000 times per day.
Phishing is one of the easiest ways for someone to steal your information as he won’t have to go through that much of a hassle, that is because you are the one who will do most of the work.
Yes, you’ve read that right, you will be the one to provide all of the information that the hacker needs. This is the most dangerous truth about social engineering.
That is because Phishing is a method of pretending to be someone else. Pretending to be a different person or a company, where in reality you don’t have any actual relations to, so that you can fool your victim into providing you with all of the information that you need in order to hack him.
In our case, the hacker is pretending to be from Facebook to fool you into proving him with your login credentials which he will later use to log in to your account.
You don’t even need to be a hacker to do that, all you have to do is to create a web page that looks exactly like Facebook.
Afterwards you can send an email to the victim saying that they were logged out from their profile for security reasons and that they need to log in again then boom, you have access to all of the information that you need to get into their profile.
You can see that in this case, the fault lies completely on the user himself and not on Facebook. Facebook can’t do anything to prevent you from giving away your information willingly.
This is also known as social engineering, it’s a clever idea to bypass security programs.
Malware programs like spyware or keyloggers can track your activities and report it back to the one who installed it.
Spyware, for example, will send pretty much everything to the hacker, but it’s not so commonly used because it’s heavy on the system which makes it relatively easy to spot.
A keylogger will only record everything that you type. In that way, the hacker will be able to only get your login credentials without too much unnecessary information.
You can get viruses like these from pretty much everywhere, you name it. Illegal websites, suspicious looking ads, suspicious links, suspicious emails, and the list goes on and on.
For example, an email that says “You’ve earned 1.000.000 million dollars, click here to get them” is a pretty good example of a suspicious email that might have a malicious ad with it.
Facebook malicious programs
There is also one category of malicious programs, that is Facebook malicious programs.
You might have noticed that when you want to use your Facebook to log in into a game with it or a website, Facebook will proceed to show you what kind of information that program will be able to get.
A malicious Facebook program will try to get full access to your account on your profile by using that information, simple as that.
How to protect Yourself
So, these are some of the most common ways that hackers use to hack your Facebook account, what can you do about it? How can you stay safe from them?
After all, as you just saw, in most cases the one who is responsible for these hacks is not Facebook but you, so you’re the one who must take charge and control.
Use your head
First of all, think before you act. No amount of protection will be enough if you cannot think for yourself.
Take the phishing method as an example, no files will get into your PC with phishing, which makes it that much harder for your Antivirus program to detect the suspicious activity, as there is nothing to detect for it.
Some Antivirus programs have developed Anti-Phishing technology but I wouldn’t rely too much on them, phishing can be tricky for an automated security program.
Use strong passwords and keep them only to your head, your friends and family don’t need to know them, after all, it’s not just a hacker in the other side of the world that can hack you.
it could also be your neighbor and if you use some obvious passwords then you’re only making it easier for him to hack you.
Don’t click in suspicious looking ads and links, don’t download pirated software and avoid illegal content as much as you can.
This list can go on forever, but all in all, just use your head. Almost all the time, there will be some kind of flaw into the hacker’s plan.
If he tries to hack you with phishing for example, take a look at the URL bar, does it look like the one that Facebook has? You get my point, right?
Use an Antivirus and an Anti-Malware
When I say an Antivirus and an Anti-Malware, I don’t mean just the one or the other, I mean both of them.
I know what you’re thinking, having two security programs running at once is bad for a PC right?
Not in this case, it is true when you’re running two Antivirus programs or two Anti-Malware ones, but using one Antivirus and one light Anti-Malware like MalwareFox is fine.
But don’t let them scan for viruses at the same time, that could create some interference. Having them both on with real-time protection and the one scanning after the other is finished seems to be the ideal configuration.
The reason that these two can work together and it’s better that way, is because the two of them do target different kinds of threats.
An Antivirus removes old kinds of viruses, while an Anti-Malware will remove newer more advanced malware.
Having both of them will dramatically decreases your chances of getting infected.