Facebook Security Checkup lets you secure your account

Facebook contains too much data about you and yours. Users share information related to their biography, occupation, date of birth, phone numbers, etc in their profiles. This info, if hacked and passed into wrong hands, can lead to identity theft. Among other information that users share on the social networking site are images and videos that contain images of your near and dear. You won’t want any harm to come to you or your near and dears. This is why we stress on the need to secure your Facebook account properly. This article talks about the new initiative by the social networking site to secure your Facebook account.

Facebook Security Checkup

Facebook Security Checkup

Facebook says it is concerned with the security of your account and hence started an initiative to protect your account from being hacked or misused by others. The initiative is basically reviewing your information such as devices you are logged in from and setting up alerts when someone or you log in from a different device or a different geographical location.

Needless to say, Facebook knows where you live (even if you lie in the profile) and blocks login if you try to login from a different place or when you use a proxy instead of logging in directly.

Log out of unused devices logged into Facebook

The first step of the Facebook account protection provided is reviewing what all devices are logged into your Facebook account. It gives you a dialog similar to the image below and allows you to review all the devices and locations. You can remove all of them and choose to login again or you can keep your most recent session the remove others if you are sure you will not be using those devices again.

Fig 2 - Log out of unwanted devices - Facebook security

It won’t be a problem if you remove all devices and then try to login using one of the removed devices. At most, Facebook will block the attempt to login and send you an SMS or email informing you of the login attempt. If you authorize the login, you will be able to access your account from that device again.

Read: What To Do When Facebook Account Is Hacked.

Enable Login Alerts

The second step in Facebook wizard to protect your Facebook account is to set up alerts for login. This way, Facebook will make sure you get an alert when a suspicious login attempt is detected. In most cases, it could you yourself using another device than you normally use – such as using Facebook app from a different phone. If you start using a proxy, then too, you will be notified and the login attempt will be blocked until you authorize the proxy location. It’s the same case with new devices too.

Fig 3 - Set up login Alerts - Facebook Security

IMPORTANT: Make sure you have given an email ID and/or phone number to Facebook before you enable Facebook Alerts because if you don’t, you will lose your account forever. Facebook sends you code or something that you might have to enter before you can login using a new device or when logging in from a new location (physically or through proxy). You can still get access to your Facebook account if you failed to provide email and/or phone number but the process will be tedious as you will be asked to send certain documents that will validate your identity before Facebook allows you access to your account.

Set up a strong password

The third step that Facebook recommends is to set up a strong password. Most of the Facebook users create passwords that can easily be guessed. One of my uncles has his occupation as his password. Things like that are very dangerous because Facebook has all data that can lead to identity theft if the account is hacked.

A 10 character password is sufficient provided you use both cases of alphabet, some numbers and few special characters in the password. Do not use P@$$w0rd as it too is easily hackable. Think of something better. I would suggest using a cloud based password manager such as Lastpass so that you can generate tough passwords without having the need to remember them. Lastpass and similar password apps or browser extensions can perform the login process for you. If interested, check out the list of free password managers.

After you complete these steps, you are sent to General Security Settings by Facebook so that you can tweak further. Here, you can create codes for login when on new devices or when logging in from new locations. You can also select three of your Facebook friends whom you can call when your login attempt is blocked by Facebook for security. These friends will be able to generate code for you that will help you access your account. I recommend setting up contacts to call when blocked so that you do not lose access to your account.

Link to access Facebook Security Initiative: facebook.com/help/securitycheckup.

Please remember that security is different from privacy. To see how to get optimal privacy, read our post of best Facebook privacy settings.

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Arun Kumar is a Microsoft MVP alumnus, obsessed with technology, especially the Internet. He deals with the multimedia content needs of training and corporate houses. Follow him on Twitter @PowercutIN