Thanksgiving Hacked Facebook Account

A couple days before Thanksgiving, Facebook disabled my account. I got a text message from my brother the next day telling me that I had tried to sell him some “adult material.”

Simple to fix… Right? After all, this is Facebook… just show that it wasn’t me, and we’ll be okay….

Where I went wrong

I guess we’ll get this out of the way… Hindsight being 20/20, I think I know why I wasn’t able to prove my identity.

You know those birthday wishes you get on fb? They’re nice, but when you receive hundreds throughout the day every year, it can get overwhelming. Figure a minute to respond to each one and say something more than “thanks”.. that takes hours to do.

So every year, I would switch my birthdate to a couple days earlier the night before, and then switch it back. (Facebook has a much simpler way to turn off birthday announcements).

I apparently forgot to switch it back… which meant that they couldn’t match my photo ID to my birthday, and since they couldn’t verify me, they wouldn’t even talk to me.

They ain’t messin’ around

I really can’t blame FB on this. While it would be a very simple fix to talk to someone, show them I’m me, multiply that by a few thousand attempts to hack accounts per hour, and I can understand why they can’t have a person address each attempt.

Facebook has an extensive help center and processes to fix just about anything that can go wrong. As long as you follow the processes, issues are usually resolved pretty quickly.

However, if something doesn’t match, then it appear to be an attempt to hack, and FB will shut it down…

…kinda like if a barber sees any signs of lice, That service stops right then and there and the client is out the door as quickly as they can be gotten out (hopefully in a kind and gentle way).

While lice typically need direct head-to-head contact to spread, I know many shops that will shut everything down and do an intense thorough cleaning and disinfecting of the facility before letting anyone back in (probably not a bad idea… there are people who love to sue, and people who love to record and post on youtube and tiktok).

So what actually happened?

Ironically, it appears that this whole mess started from one of my website clients (I’ve been building websites for years).

I won’t out them, but when I learned who it was, it made a lot of sense.

When helping someone get their online presence set up, I often set up their FB and other social media pages for them, and then tell them to remove me as the administrator for their accounts.

This person had not done this.

Their ads account got hacked, and since I was still listed as their admin, my accounts got hacked into.

What’s the end result?

In short, my entire Facebook and Instagram presence is erased.

It means that I’ll rebuild what I need to rebuild, which will take some time to do.

Nothing truly important was really lost… I still have all my pictures and such in my own computers, etc…

So really, there’s not much that went away that can’t be replaced… if it’s important enough for me to even worry about replacing.

Oh…. and I’ve blocked my birthday on Facebook!