This happened to me a few months back and if you’re here reading this, you’re probably going through the same thing. If that’s the case then I am TRULY SORRY you’re going through it, I know how scary it can be but hopefully this blog post will help you get it back too. I wrote it in two parts, part 1 is how to recover your hacked account and part 2 is how to avoid getting hacked.
What took me the longest was finding out WHERE exactly I should report it! It turns out I had been reporting it with the wrong form for days without knowing, it was maddening when I found out.
*My hacked Instagram account was a Business Account (meaning I get daily insights and data on every post I make) but whether yours is the same or a personal one, it is the same process for everyone to recover and I KNOW you can get it back so please don’t lose hope.
Here is my personal experience and advice:
FIRST THINGS FIRST
DO NOT engage with your hackers. If you got hacked on IG you probably got an email from them where they will most likely be asking you for money. But as tempting as it might be to try to recover it this way PLEASE do not! I heard of so many people that got hacked the same month that I did and many of them paid but guess what… Nothing happened! No account back, no reply, nothing. And in general that’s the way it always goes because obviously you cannot trust these people, so please do not waste your time or hard earned money. The people who hacked me asked me to pay several times and believe me threats got worse each time they emailed me, but I did NOT reply to them at all!
SO WHAT TO DO?
It is ALWAYS better to report it Instagram to get your actual account back. Because what can also happen is that you might get your account back but everything is deleted, they unfollowed everyone and blocked everyone that followed you, I’ve seen it happen many times. Only Instagram can get your full account back so what you want to do is GO TO FORGOT PASSWORD –I know you didn’t actually forget your password but just click it. Step 2 will be asking for the username or email linked to your Instagram account, then it should take you to the Purple/Red form and that’s Step 3:
*I clicked “Personal Account with photos of me”
Of course try to mention as many relevant details as you can in the form. For example, I made sure to mention mine was a Business Account and that it had a live running ad when I was hacked, the username they had changed my account to, things like that. Use what little info you have and click Request Support.
APPROXIMATE RECOVER TIME:
Now it’s time to wait for Instagram/Facebook to email you (at the email you provided above in the form) with instructions. From what people told me and from what I searched online, for most people it took anywhere from 1-3 days on average. For others it took a few weeks and I was one of those cases. It took me about 14 days to hear back from them, so this is where you need to be patient. But know you will hear back from them!
SO WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY CONTACT YOU?
For security reasons Instagram/Facebook will ask you some personal information to make sure you truly are the owner of the account. After I replied to them it took another 2 days to get a follow up email where they asked me to take a photo of myself holding a blank piece of paper and handwrite my name and a code they had given me and hold the paper up next to my face. And that was it! I had my account back in a few hours after.
Of course do not stress about the time it took ME to get it back, for some people it was a much shorter wait. And likewise if it’s taking you longer than it took for me, it does not mean they won’t get back to you, it varies from case to case and we all just have to be patient. But they will help you out!
ANYTHING EXTRA THAT COULD HELP?
YES! Do not be shy about asking for help. Look, whether you’re online for pleasure or for business, social media accounts and emails have become such a personal part of our lives that having others access that information can get scary really fast. So don’t think twice about asking literally everyone you know if THEY know anyone that has gone through the same thing or if they might have a contact at Instagram/Facebook —because truly you never know! Someone out there in your acquaintance could have a valuable piece of advice or refer you to someone that could help you. I was going through that process when thankfully all of a sudden I got my account back.
HOW TO AVOID GETTING HACKED:
- First make sure you have Two-Factor Authentication On on all your online accounts. This means you will go through a higher level of protection to be able to access the account. It is extremely important that you have it set up! Double check that you do.
- If you get an email from Instagram/Facebook or any social media platform ALWAYS click on the “email name” to verify that it is actually from Instagram or said platform to avoid getting hacked. For example if Instagram needs to contact you for any security reason it will be this email below (get familiarised with the main ones so you know you can trust them):
3. Apply the same rule to every email you get that feels out of the ordinary. I verify an email is legit on every single email I receive before I reply just to be safe. That’s just me, you can use your own judgement on that one.
4. Make your passwords into something that doesn’t make sense to anyone in the world and the most random combination you can think of. As well as changing that password often! Obviously do not use the same password for the rest of your accounts. That’s a quick way to lose it all at once.
And that is it for now! But I hope this post was helpful to you. I know how helpless you can feel in a situation like this but know that there’s always a way to get your account back. Comment below if you have any questions or comment below if you know of something that helped you in a similar situation so we can all help each other out!! <3 I send you all my best wishes and good luck!
Love you all,