You live and you learn comes to mind when I think about my Twitter account being hacked. This was the Twitter account for Dis411, which is my first blog. It may have been prevented, if I had taken a few more precautions. Ugh! Thankfully, after about a week-long process, we were able to get it back.
How it happened
This is what happened. I was moving along with my day (August 1, 2017), working on my blogs and social media, when I received an email from Twitter that my Blogging Mom account had been locked. They said my account may have been compromised by a website or service not associated with them. In order for me to be able to log back in, Twitter said I had to change my password. I immediately did that, and hurried to get to my Dis411 Twitter account. By then, it was too late, someone had hacked it and taken my account. We later found out that someone (or the same person) was trying to hack my husband’s Twitter account too. We contacted Twitter Support and got the information filed about the situation.
How I felt
I was upset and heartsick about it. It was part of my brand. Something that I worked hard to build over the last six plus years. It was a part of me. Twitter has always been my favorite social media. Over the years I had communicated with so many people through Twitter, including celebrities like Zendaya, Olivia Holt, Bella Thorne, Peyton List, Karan Brar and so many more (I posted a lot of articles about the Disney Channel and Disney XD stars on my Dis411 blog). Knowing that someone was pretending to be me, was really frustrating.
When I wrapped my mind around what had happened, I of course felt so thankful that it wasn’t like someone close to me was physically harmed. I was just sick to my stomach knowing that someone took my account from me and that I may not get it back. We have been in a few situations before where I felt this similar feeling. But the worst time was when we had someone steal our personal belongings from us that were stored in our shed, while my son and I were in the house. They had knocked (actually pounded) on the door, and of course we didn’t answer (so thankful we didn’t)! I called my husband, and he rushed back as soon as he could. We called the police, but by the time they drove by our house, this man and woman had already left. They had grabbed our lawn mover, my husband’s fishing lures and many more things. We were hiding in the house, but I peeked out to see them take the lawn mover. I was scared to death, and shaky and so happy when they left. We could deal with the loss of our items, but if something had happened to one of us, it would have been devastating.
So back to our current dilemma. We were all pretty frantic after realizing my Dis411 account was taken and immediately my guys and I all got on our computers and changed any other important accounts that had that same password. Kinda scary. Especially when I was having a hard time getting into my bank account. And, thinking back to earlier in the day when my husband had logged in and noticed that they were asking us our security questions. I know that does happen occasionally anyway, but it had happened on two separate times when he was logging in. Thankfully, their system was just having a little glitch, and we didn’t have a problem changing our password. But, the timing of that was not good, and there went my stomach knotting up again, and I literally felt dizzy! We didn’t know if this hacker had gotten into our computers, if it was just our Twitter accounts, etc. We had used three different passwords and email addresses for these three Twitter accounts. It was really perplexing.
How we resolved the issue
My husband was contacted by the hacker who wondered if we wanted our account back? Duh! Yes!! But, we ignored him and waited for Twitter to respond. After a few days, we were still trying to work with Twitter, and they weren’t having any luck solving the problem. He had also taunted me on my Blogging Mom Twitter account wanting me to DM him about my Dis411 account. We filed another complaint with Twitter. The hacker had changed the name of my Dis411 account, deleted most of the people I was following, deleted a lot of my tweets and retweets and created a new Dis411 Twitter account. By this time, I had already resigned myself to the fact that it was a lost cause, and we tried to move on. About 3 days after all of that, my husband and I were discussing it again, and we couldn’t figure out why Twitter didn’t send us an email about the Dis411 account. We assumed that since the hacker emailed my husband, that that was the email we used for our Twitter account. But, in looking and thinking back to when we started the Twitter account, it was a totally different email that was associated with our blog, and one that we didn’t use anymore. Wow!! Really CRAZY!! My husband was able to get back into that email account, and he found the message from Twitter. It was no wonder why Twitter couldn’t find the information! We were associating the wrong email address with my Twitter account. As soon as we contacted them one last time, they were able to take care of the situation and got our account back!! YAYYYYYY!!!! We really want to thank them for their effort!!! 🙂
Thanks so much to @twittersupport for your help in getting our account that was hacked back!! YAY!!!!! 🙂
— Dis411 (@Dis411) August 7, 2017
Here are a few things you can do to help prevent your Twitter account from being hacked.
1. Change your password
You know when you know you should do something, but keep putting it off because you have other things to do. Well, that is what happened with my lack of changing up my Twitter password. I can easily say that I am busy doing other things, everything was fine and I was comfortable and then BAM! I was blind sighted. I hate to admit it, but I had used the same password since I began my Twitter account in early 2011. We had started our first blog (which was dis411.com and then we began dis411.net) on October 31, 2010. In fact, this shouldn’t just be for Twitter, you should change up all of your important passwords often.
2. Two-factor authentication (2FA)
I never knew that you could put this extra safety precaution in place to help with the security of your Twitter account. Again, I was just comfortable with my routine and moving along with life that I was not concerned. 🙂 But, after having my account stolen from me, and then getting it back, my husband felt it was a good idea to use the 2 factor authentication for both of my Twitter accounts. It involves one extra step when I log into Twitter on my laptop, but I feel so much better about my accounts now. Along with typing in your username and password to log in, a SMS message with a code is delivered to your cell phone that you’ll need to type in to access your account.
To initiate this process, you will need to log in to your Twitter account and then go into “Settings and Privacy” in your account details. Under security, check the box next to “verify login requests.” Twitter will then send you information about that.
I hope that this will help you, and I hope this never happens to you. By taking these steps, I feel a little more at peace. You never know in any given day what will pop up, and it is good to be prepared.
Thanks for reading!! Have a great day! 🙂