Almost two out of five Americans say that their social media accounts have been taken over. As more and more account information gets leaked, the numbers are likely to increase.

Lisa Plaggemier is the executive director of the National Cybersecurity Alliance. If you don't reuse the same password on other accounts, hacker software can easily generate iteration until they get a hit.

Chances are you have been involved in at least one data breach. You can find out if you have been pwned by visiting the site have I been pwned?

If you respond to a scam email that says your Facebook page has been scheduled for deletion and you must log in immediately to appeal the action, you are giving your login to crooks.

There are probably things you could have done differently to make sure you don't get hacked. The past isn't the present. If you want to protect your accounts you should get online first.

Recovering your account

Sometimes by a small amount and sometimes by a lot, the steps for regaining access to your account vary. They follow a general pattern, starting from easy password resets to getting help from real humans. You may not be able to recover your account if you have changed your password too much.

You need to know that you have been hacked. Here are some things to look out for.

There are pics or videos you never shot that show up on your social media accounts. You are getting fake messages from friends on social media. You don't own a device that you use to log in. There are new people in your account. There is an email that says your email address is different.

If this happens, tech companies advise you to log in and change your password, assuming you haven't already done so. Make sure you use a good password when changing it. How to do that further down will be described by me.

You will have to take other steps to recover your account if your password doesn't work anymore. You can request a login link be sent to your registered address or a security code be sent to your phone number, if you choose to do so. Human support can be provided by some services.

Recovery steps for each service

Instructions for the web interface will be provided if the mechanics of app-centered services vary a lot between the two operating systems. Instructions for mobile will be given if not.


A lot of personal information can be found with your Apple ID. If you use iCloud a lot, hackers may be able to access your contacts, calendar, photos, notes, and even your location.

You can change your password by going to the sign-in page. Go to another Apple device if the site doesn't accept your Apple ID.

The “Change Password” dialogue on iOS. The dialogue for scheduling an Apple Support call.


The “Change Password” dialogue on iOS.

Click the Apple menu in the upper left of the screen and then click System Preferences and Apple ID to open it. Then you can change the password. Go to the settings on the device and tap your name. Password and security can be changed by clicking.

It is possible to schedule a call with a human if these methods don't work. More information can be found on Apple's support page.


To find out if your account is compromised, go to You can enter your email on the next page. On the next page, you're asked to remember your password. If you have a hacker change your password, you should still be able to get in and take control of your account.

If Facebook doesn't accept your password, you can send an email to one of the addresses it has on file, which should protect you even if the hacker changes the "current" contact email. Click on the "No longer have access to these?" prompt if this isn't working. Whether you are logging in from a device or a location you have used before will be checked by Facebook. The particular web browser is included in the device.

A recent password can help you regain control of your Facebook account, even if it’s not still in use.If you can’t log in, Facebook will present you with a set of alternative identifiers to help lock down your account.If the account is fully locked, Facebook will ask for a photo ID in order to regain control.

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A recent password can help you regain control of your Facebook account, even if it’s not still in use.

Your passport, driver's license, marriage certificate, green card, and voter ID card are all required to be uploaded if all else fails. If you want to have your ID scanned, hold it up to your camera. Instructions will be sent to you by Facebook.

If all the automated tools fail, what would happen? Facebook doesn't say if it will include help from humans, but it says it is building better support.

See our full guide for more details and strategies.


Losing access to your account can cause a lot of problems, as it could prevent you from using your services.

If you think you have been hacked, you need to sign in to your account on the internet. If the login page won't accept your email or password, you can go to the account recovery page and try again.

Google offers a number of options to verify yourself for account recovery.The process often includes a purposeful delay to make fraudulent account recovery more difficult.An alert, sent to a separate device, will help confirm the request is legitimate.

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Google offers a number of options to verify yourself for account recovery.

When you enter the email address you want to recover, you will also be asked to remember the password. A hacker might change your password before you do. Click "Try another way" if that password isn't working. A verification code will be sent to you if a backup email is associated with your account.

If you don't have or can't access a recovery email, you can try another way by typing "Try another way" If you get the code, use it to create a strong password.

Click if that doesn't work. It may be possible for it to ask more questions to establish your identity. You might be out of luck at this point. In order to get past the hurdle, you need human support. You will get a voice bot that will point you to various websites for help if you call support.

See our full guide for more information.


Let's go over the web process since it is slightly different for the two mobile devices. You can go to the website. If you have a Facebook account, you may be able to log in with it. Click on the password if either of these works.

When you can’t log in, you’ll see a screen like this. “Reset your password” is the option you want.Once the verification code has been sent, you’ll see this pop-up.


When you can’t log in, you’ll see a screen like this. “Reset your password” is the option you want.

You can get a code via text on the next screen if you enter your email or phone number. You can reset your password by clicking on the link in the email or on the phone. To enter a new strong password, either method requires you to go to the screen. Log in and return tograming.

If these don't work, enter the login information you most recently used and click "Can't reset your password?" Click on "I think my account has been hacked" and then scroll down to request a security code or support from the social network. Instructions on how to request help from the app on your phone can be found here.


It's easy to explain how to do this on the web since the different apps make it difficult. The first thing to do is to log in. You can verify your identity by entering your phone number or email address if you can't log in with your usernames and passwords. You will get a text or email with a link to reset your password.

If the hacker has changed your account information, this should work. The link to the old email is sent whenever that information is changed. Click here if this isn't you.

You can request help recovering your account by visiting the support page and filling out a form. See the recovery page for more information. The Trust and Safety team works around the clock and responds to reports and concerns within hours of being received, according to the email.


Spotify’s password reset page
Spotify’s password reset page

If you forgot your password, go to the reset page and enter your email address. You will be sent an email with a link to a page where you can reset your password if it's recognized. You can contact live chat support if this doesn't work.

You can find more information on the support page.


If you have associated any of them with your TikTok account, TikTok offers a number of ways to log in.

A screenshot of TikTok’s login screen, with options to continue through Facebook, Apple, Google, Twitter or Instagram.A Tiktok account recovery screen inviting the user to enter a six-digit code.


If you have an account with any of these services connected to your TikTok account, you can use it to recover control of your account.

If you want to change your password in the app, you need to tap Profile in the bottom right and the hamburger icon in the top right. If you want to manage your account, tap settings and privacy. TikTok will email or text you a six-digit code if you select Password.

You will not be able to log in if your email and phone number are changed by a hacker. You can email if you'd like to submit a support request.

See the support page for more information.


TikTok’s password reset screen
TikTok’s password reset screen

To reset your password, go to the form and enter your information. If you want to get a login link via email or text, you have to make a decision.

If you need help with a hacked or compromised account, fill out the form on the help center page and you will be helped.

You can find more information on the support page.

Securing your account for the future

It is possible that you have got back into your account. It's time to make sure nobody else can. Creating a strong password is the first step.

The advice on creating passwords has changed from silly character substitution to nonsensical statements. You can use a password manager in your browser or freestanding app to create long, unique strings of gibberish and fill them in for you.

If someone still gets or guesses this complex password, you can use two-factor or multi-factor security. When you get a text from your bank, you have to enter a code on your computer to log in.

Sharing your phone number with as few companies as possible is the best way to protect your phone number from being hacked. Setting up a 2FA/MFA code generator on your phone is even more secure.

It takes a bit of work to get the password manager set up, but it pays off in the long run. It's a small price to avoid getting your account hacked.