Your “trusted contacts” on Facebook is “going away soon.” You might’ve seen this notice in the Facebook app. It’s true.
If you had the trusted contacts feature set up, know that Facebook will soon get rid of it. What this means is your chosen friends will no longer be able to help you get back on Facebook if you lose access to your account. Ugh.
Most likely, this is yet another of the myriad features Facebook chooses to nix without explanation because not that many people were using it. Which could be tens of millions, but not hundreds of millions or a billion or more.
The way Facebook worded the notification, it was definitely confusing and not clear… typical FB.
“Trusted contacts ends soon.”— could be interpreted like it’s time to review, change, edit or update your trusted contacts… Certainly that was my very first thought. Hmph.
I would reword the notification to, “Facebook is removing the trusted contacts feature altogether (on xyz date). But, rest assured, here are 12 ways to protect your account and stay safe.”There, much better!
Btw, the date for expiring the trusted contacts feature is not clear. The current help section still has instructions for setting up your trusted contacts, but there is a notice at the top saying the feature is going away soon.
SO, whether you have trusted contacts set up or not, here is a solid checklist of all the actions you should absolutely have in place to ensure your Facebook account is super solid, safe and secure.
On desktop or mobile, navigate to your Facebook Settings and follow these steps.
1. Ensure your password is long and cryptic. If you can remember your password (for anything!), it’s not cryptic enough. [So long as you are using a strong password – along with 2FA – you shouldn’t need to change your password that often. But, some security experts suggest changing your password every few months.]
2. Set up 2FA (two-factor authentication) or MFA (multifactor authentication). This is done under your Security and Login settings. Most people utilize SMS to receive a code via text message. However, for optimal security, it’s much better to use an Authenticator app. Google Authenticator (iOS or Android) and Duo Mobile are among the top apps.
3. Always use a reputable password manager tool, e.g. LastPass, 1Password, etc.
4. Never share your login credentials with anyone, for any reason. [To share access to your business page, use Business Manager or Business Suite and add Admins with appropriate roles, ensuring they also have 2FA set up].
5. Set up extra security by enabling “Get alerts about unrecognized logins.” Select notifications on Facebook, via Messenger and by email.
6. Periodically check your Logged In Sessions and remove any that you no longer need.
7. Under Settings, periodically check which Apps and Websites are connected to your Facebook account and still have active access. Remove any you no longer need or use.
8. Regularly review your Business Integrations – these are apps and services that you’ve used Facebook to log into. Again, remove any you no longer need or use.
9. Download your information – this setting allows you to download everything you’ve ever posted on Facebook and it’s a solid best practice for both your personal profile and business Page, as at least you would own a back up off of Facebook. (Just like you back up your website or blog). I would recommend downloading your information a minimum of once a year, but maybe 2-4 times a year depending on how much you post! (See Step #9.9 on this post).
10. Consider hiding your Friends and Followers on your personal profile if you have a large number of them. The setting is under the 3 dots on your Friends or Followers tab. This is particularly important for profiles that get impersonated as it looks very enticing to a scammer to be able to act as you and try to scam your entire network. The bad actors create a new account with a name that looks very close to yours, use your profile picture, send friend requests to all your publicly visible friends and then spam them with scam links. [This icky scam seems to be increasing lately, particularly on Instagram. ?]
11. Always be very careful to check any links sent to you via DM and/or email that seems to come from Facebook (or even from trusted friends, as it’s possible they got hacked). Phishing is rampant these days and the scammers are getting cleverer by the day; it’s all too easy to fall prey to something that looks too good to be true. If in doubt, do not click!
12. Keep your web browser up to date and remove any suspicious applications or browser add-ons or extensions.
Related: Facebook account hacked? Business Manager hacked? Here’s how to get help
Hopefully you’ll be more confident about how secure your Facebook account is after taking these 12 steps!
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Need help with your Facebook marketing? Season Three of my most popular program #FBOMM: Facebook Organic Marketing Masterclass is coming up very soon!