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Post-Hacking Catchup

A lesson in paying full attention when replying to social media messages.

I have been a bit quiet on my blog and social media accounts for the last month; this is because on 21st Oct my Instagram account got hacked. I won't bore you with the details but if I hadn't been out and having a few drinks I probably wouldn't have replied to the message I did and everything would still be fine.

The result was getting locked out of my account and, as I wasn't able to react quickly enough, losing control of the sign in details. This continues to be annoying for several reasons: the hackers never changed the email address so I am still getting messages for the old account that I can't reply to, they have activated the 2 Factor Authentication system that I should have been using but wasn't, but mainly because I had just got over 1000 followers and now I am going to have to start all over again.

After repeatedly trying to get my account back I have learnt several things:

  • Instagram/Facebook/Meta has NO customer support. If your problem does not fit into the step by step help tutorials you are screwed.

  • If your Instagram photo wall doesn't contain any recent selfies (of just you on your own) you can not prove your identity when you use the video function to scan your face.

  • Make sure you set up the 2 Factor Authentication setting to back up your security settings.

Adding to the annoyance I feel, the hacker has not made any changes to the account. The photos are all still there, nothing has been added and they have not used it to try to contact any of my followers to get them to fall for any scams. It's just sitting there. People can still like, comment and follow and I still get notified when they do.

I have, however, had no option but to create a new account and can now be found at @filmfreephotography_uk

As of today (19/11/22) 301 people have followed the new account, most of them are people who were following the old one but a handful are new. I am extremely grateful to those people and will continue to work towards growing the account to get it back up to what it was before; and if there is any chance of getting the old account back, I will take it.

Thank you x

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