Someone else got hacked – An interview with Sali from iwork4uglos

Following on from my experience of being hacked, it would seem it really is quite common for this to happen. Once I voiced my story, so many people said “I got hacked” so I thought I would write about other people experiences so you can avoid it happening to you!

I am a Marketing Virtual Assistant from Cheltenham, I help small businesses with their digital marketing (social media, website build/maintenance and admin tasks).  Since the online world is a big part of my business, I need to keep my clients accounts safe online – hence why I am so passionate about it.

Someone else got hacked – read Sali’s story

Sali, creator of iwork4uglos lifestyle & business directory and Cheltenham Noticeboard, unfortunately Sali had her personal Instagram account hacked.  I asked Sali a few questions about her experience and I think you will be interested to hear what happened, and how and if she got her account back.

What was Sali’s experience of social media before this happened?  She enjoyed it mostly.  She used social media for both her business and for personal use, which to be fair is what most of us do.  The account that got hacked was on social media, and it was her personal her Instagram account.

Paula: Can I ask what happened?

 

Sali: A friend on Instagram sent me a message saying he’d been locked out of his account and needed 2 friends to vouch for him. He said I’d receive a code which I would need to send over to him. I asked if it was genuine and he said “of course it’s me, Hun!” (or Babe, something familiar which made me think yeah it’s him – he would use those words for friends). I didn’t do it at first but then he messaged me again saying he really needed this help. I was multi-tasking at the time, but as the code arrived via text I thought it must be legit, so I copied the url and sent it over to him.

Straight afterwards my Insta was hacked and stolen. I tried to recover it, even sending a video to Instagram (upon their request) to prove it was me. The trouble is – that could have been the hacker too, asking for the video. I had no idea what I was clicking on but they all seemed legit. They changed the logins and email address and everything connected to me, so I now have absolutely no access to it and no way of reclaiming it. Instagram will not help. An IT expert came over to try and help me but he had no luck either.

I have let it go now but I still get messages from friends and contacts asking if it’s me sending them messages or whether I’ve been hacked. The account has been reported – probably hundreds of times now – and still nothing is done.

Frustrating and also sad, because I had the last ever pictures of my nanna before she died; I had pictures throughout my son’s life, etc. Everything I had done, pretty much, was documented there and I had messages, comments, contacts. It was quite heartbreaking really as there was a lot of special stuff on there. But I just try not to think about it much any more. It was over a year ago. I don’t want to spend any more energy on it

Paula: How did you realise you had been hacked?

Sali: I could no longer access my account.

Paula: What emotions were you feeling at that point?

Sali: Frustration. Anger. Sadness.

Paula: What did you do next?

Sali: Tell people. Warn people. Ask for help.

Paula: Did you manage to secure your account?

Sali: I never did manage.

Paula: What security measures have you put in place?

Sali: I didn’t bother setting up a new personal account and I just use my business one now. While I still have it! I don’t like the 2-factor ID thing. It can backfire on you. Like if you lose or break your phone or whatever. It backfired on me as I was not able to get into my account because the recovery code was being sent to the hacker, who had already changed the recovery mobile number!

Paula: Afterwards, how do you feel?

Sali: Exhausted!! LOL

Paula: How do you feel about social media now?

Sali: I would like to move away from it eventually. I might do a different business at some point, but I enjoy my work, love my clients, and while I can still use social media, I will continue it.

Paula: It wasn’t a business account that got hacked, but how has this happening effected your business?

Sali: I always find other ways to work round things. Perhaps it has given me more time to focus on other areas and to create content and write blogs and the e-magazine.

Paula: What advice would you give anyone else?

Sali: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. 

Paula: Anything else you would like to add?

Sali: These things can be beneficial, but we mustn’t rely on them completely. Make them work for us and not the other way round. xx

Conclusion

Sali had a terrible time trying to recover her personal account which she never did and unfortunately it had a lot of personal photos on there.  I think Sali, summed it up well when she said don’t put all your eggs in one basket and she is right, we automatically think our account and content are ours and it will always be available for us to use and see in the future but as we are finding out that sometimes this just isn’t the case.

I think Sali, has come out of the experience with more clarity over how she uses social media and how to use it to her advantage rather than be at the mercy of a big corporation who don’t seem to want to help their customers.

I do wonder if in the future if we will all stop using social media, but for now we are all too consumed to do this and small businesses rely upon it to help promote their businesses.

 

If you have been effected by being hacked and would like to tell your sorry, please do send me an email – paula@pinksprout.co.uk.

If you would like to secure you account using a 2 factor authentication (it was be by email rather than an app), then please see below the details on how to do it!

How to turn on 2-factor authentication on your social media accounts –

You will need either an authentication app (Google does one called authenticator) or they can send you login codes via text message or Whatsapp – I suggest the app.

 

Instagram –

Tap on your profile picture in the bottom right to go to your profile.

Tap in the top right, then tap Settings and Privacy.

Tap Security, then tap Two-Factor Authentication.

Link –  https://help.instagram.com/566810106808145

 

Facebook –

Tap in the top right of Facebook. Scroll down and tap Settings, then tap Password and Security.

Scroll down and tap Use two-factor authentication.

Choose the security method you want to add and follow the on-screen instructions.

Link – https://www.facebook.com/help/148233965247823

 

LinkedIn –

Click the Me icon at the top of your LinkedIn homepage.

Select Settings & Privacy from the dropdown.

Under the Login and Security section of the Account tab, click Change next to Two-step verification.

Click Turn on or Turn off to change the status of two-step verification.

Link – https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/answer/a1358878

 

Twitter –

In the side menu, click More, then click Settings and Privacy.

Click on Security and Account access, and then click Security. Click Two-factor authentication.

There are three methods to choose from: Text message, Authentication app, or Security key.

Link –https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/product/2023/an-update-on-two-factor-authentication-using-sms-on-twitter

 

TikTok –

Tap “Me” in the bottom-right corner of the screen.

Tap the three dots in the top-right corner of the screen.

Tap “Security.”

Tap “2-step verification.”

Link –https://ads.tiktok.com/help/article/two-step-verification?lang=en