My Facebook has been Hacked!

“My Facebook has been Hacked!” is something I hear several times a week.

9 times out of 10 I find that there hasn’t actually been an account compromise, but instead an unknown person has created a duplicate account and has started adding all the original accounts Facebook friends.

Why would someone do this? Well, if they can pretend to be you, they can potentially scam one of your unsuspecting Facebook friends. There is a good chance your Facebook friends trust and respect you, so if they receive a message that appears to come from you, they are probably more likely to take the bait.

Scams vary; the scammer may send through a link to a malicious website designed to collect personal details, the link could contain malware, or they could straight out ask the victim to transfer some money.

Picking the victim

The scammer doesn’t just pick anyone to impersonate online. They will usually opt for accounts that are publicly visible, have a profile picture, and have a publicly visible friends list.

A publicly visible Facebook profile is easier for a scammer to come across. Once they do, the scammer will then download your profile picture. Create a new Facebook account, and then add all your friends from your publicly visible friends list.

If you have never changed any of your Facebook privacy settings, there is a good chance your profile fits into the category of someone they would like to impersonate.

How to avoid this happening to you

Facebook default settings are someone questionable in respect to privacy. I will show you know how to lock down your Facebook account and change it from the very open defaults.

First of all click the menu button and come down to settings.

Click Privacy in the left hand Windows and change the settings to match the settings below.

Click on the image to see full screen

At a bare minimum ensure that Who can see your friends list? is set to Only me and Do you want search engines outside of Facebook to link to your profile? should be set to No.

These are the main two settings that are going to lower the odds of someone trying to impersonate you.

For privacy, I highly recommend changing Who can look you up using the email/phone number you provided to Only me.

More settings can be found on Timeline and Tagging.

Click on Timeline and Tagging and then change the settings to match the settings below.

Click on the image to see full screen

These settings will help to keep your Facebook profile a little more private and hopefully make your account a little less easy to impersonate.

To avoid someone compromising your account ensure you use a strong unique password for every account online and also enable two-factor authentication.

Don’t forget to check out our other Tech-tips articles!

Enable File History Backups Windows 10

Many people do not have any kind of automatic backup enabled and instead rely on manual backups of their data. While manually backing up files is better than having no backup. Setting an automatic backup means you wont forget to do a backup.

Because an automatic backup is always online it does come with its own problems. If the device is infected with malware, this could spread to the backup drive. This is why it is important to have multiple backups using the 3-2-1 rule.

This 3-2-1 rule is as follows:

  • 3 copies of a file
  • 2 backups on different types of medium. i.e. on an external hard drive and a NAS
  • 1 offsite copy. i.e. in the cloud, or an external hard drive stored away from your home.

Today I will be concentrating on one type of backup. That is the built-in utility included with Windows 10 called File History.

To enable File History we need an external hard drive (a secondary internal hard drive can also be used).

File History’s default settings will save files every hour and keep versions forever – as in, files wont be removed after a set period of time. This may need to be modified to suit your needs and the amount of data stored on your device.

To configure File History first plug in an External Hard Drive. You should receive some kind of notification that a drive has been inserted. Take note of the drive name and letter. i.e. TOSHIBA EXT (F:)

Press Windows Key + i to bring up the Windows Settings App. In the search box type backup and then click on Backup settings.

Click Add a drive and then select the hard drive to which you wish to backup files.

Click on Back-up options and click Back up now

On the Back-up options screen you are able to add additional folders to be backed up up, i.e. If you have a folder outside your User Directory.

Scrolling further down the screen you are also able to add folders you wish to excluded from the backup. This is handy if you have folders containing large amounts of data and need to split your File History backups over multiple drives.

This is just one way you can backup your data. While this will help protect against data loss from a deleted file or failed hard drive, it wont help protect against ransomware. To protect against malware it is recommended to also have an offline backup.

For other ways to protect yourself online and your data, check out our tech tips articles.

Remove Previous Build Versions of Windows 10

Windows 10 has changed the way we receive new versions of Windows. Previously we would get a new version of Windows every couple of years. i.e, Windows 7 -> Windows 8 -> Windows 8.1 -> Windows 10.

Windows 10 is now upgraded on a “Rolling Release”. Meaning we receive a new “build” of Windows 10 every six months. This introduces new products or features that previously we may have only gotten with a whole new version of Window.

Windows 10 allows you to rollback to the previous build if there are any issues with the install. This is an option that’s available for 14 days after installing a new build.

After this period of time, you can no longer roll back, but the files for the previous build are still sitting on your machine taking up space. It can be handy to clean up these files to keep things running correctly or if you are getting low on space.

This can be done using a tool built into Windows call Disk Clean-up.

Disk Cleanup

First thing we need to do is open Disk Clean-up. This can be done by following the steps below:

  1. Hold the Windows Key and Press R
  2. Type in cleanmgr and press enter
  3. Ensure (C:) is show in the drop down box and click OK
Select the drive you wish to clean up

Disk cleanup will now scan through files and then the main window will appear.

Scanning for files that can be cleaned up
The main Disk Clean-up window

Removing Previous Builds

Before we can remove the previous builds of Windows 10, we will need to click the Clean up system files button at the bottom of the main Disk Clean-up Window.

You will be greeted with a UAC prompt (at which you may need to enter an administrator password). Click yes to allow the application to make changes.

Again you will need to ensure (C:) is shown in the drop down box and click OK.

Disk Clean-up will again scan through some files and then take you back to the Disk Clean-up Window.

Tick Previous Windows Installation(s) in the list of items. Other items you wish to remove can also be ticked. Click OK to start the cleanup.

Select the items you wish to clean

This can take some time. Once it has finished the Window will disappear. You will need to restart the computer afterwards to finalize the cleanup.