Skip to main content

Facebook is locking out people who didn’t activate Facebook Protect

Facebook is locking out people who didn’t activate Facebook Protect

/

And some can’t get in even if they turned it on

Share this story

Illustration by Alex Castro

Early in March, a bunch of Facebook users got a mysterious, spam-like email titled “Your account requires advanced security from Facebook Protect” and telling them that they were required to turn on the Facebook Protect feature (which they could do by hitting a link in the email) by a certain date, or they would be locked out of their account.

The program, according to Facebook, is a “security program for groups of people that are more likely to be targeted by malicious hackers, such as human rights defenders, journalists, and government officials.” It’s meant to do things like ensure those accounts are monitored for hacking threats and that they are protected by two-factor authentication (2FA).

Unfortunately, the email that Facebook sent from the address security@facebookmail.com resembled a rather common form of spam, and so it’s probable that many people ignored it.

It actually wasn’t spam. In fact, it was real. The first deadline to hit for many people was Thursday, March 17th. And now, they are locked out of their Facebook accounts — and are having trouble with the process that Facebook has provided to get them back in.

Those who did not activate Facebook Protect before their deadline are apparently getting a message explaining why they can’t get into their accounts and offering to help them turn it on. However, it’s not always working:

There have also have been a variety of complaints on Twitter and other social networking venues that people are being locked out of their accounts even if they do have the appropriate safeguards. Some say that their text-based 2FA is simply not working:

Others complained that they couldn’t get through the activation process even before the deadline and so are effectively locked out of their accounts:

We’ve contacted the company and asked if they have any suggestions for those who are locked out because their Facebook Protected accounts can’t be accessed. We’ll let you know if we hear back.

Update: Nathaniel Gleicher, head of security policy at Meta, Facebook’s parent company, tweeted on March 18th that “We’re looking into isolated examples where people may need help enrolling in the program.”

Update March 21st, 2022, 9:20AM ET: This article was originally published on March 18th, 2022, and has been updated to add Facebook’s statement.

Today’s Storystream

Feed refreshed Two hours ago Midjourneys

E
External Link
Emma RothTwo hours ago
Celsius’ CEO is out.

Alex Mashinsky, the head of the bankrupt crypto lending firm Celsius, announced his resignation today, but not after patting himself on the back for working “tirelessly to help the company.”

In Mashinsky’s eyes, I guess that means designing “Unbankrupt yourself” t-shirts on Cafepress and then selling them to a user base that just had their funds vaporized.

At least customers of the embattled Voyager Digital crypto firm are in slightly better shape, as the Sam Bankman-Fried-owned FTX just bought out the company’s assets.


M
Twitter
Mary Beth GriggsTwo hours ago
NASA’s SLS rocket is secure as Hurricane Ian barrels towards Florida.

The rocket — and the Orion spacecraft on top — are now back inside the massive Vehicle Assembly Building. Facing menacing forecasts, NASA decided to roll it away from the launchpad yesterday.


A
External Link
Andrew J. Hawkins1:30 PM UTC
Harley-Davidson’s electric motorcycle brand is about to go public via SPAC

LiveWire has completed its merger with a blank-check company and will make its debut on the New York Stock Exchange today. Harley-Davison CEO Jochen Zeitz called it “a proud and exciting milestone for LiveWire towards its ambition to become the most desirable electric motorcycle brand in the world.” Hopefully it also manages to avoid the cash crunch of other EV SPACs, like Canoo, Arrival, Faraday Future, and Lordstown.


A
The Verge
Andrew Webster1:06 PM UTC
“There’s an endless array of drama going on surrounding Twitch right now.”

That’s Ryan Morrison, CEO of Evolved Talent Agency, which represents some of the biggest streamers around. And he’s right — as you can read in this investigation from my colleague Ash Parrish, who looked into just what’s going on with Amazon’s livestreaming service.


R
The Verge
Richard Lawler12:59 PM UTC
Green light.

NASA’s spacecraft crashed, and everyone is very happy about it.

Otherwise, Mitchell Clark is kicking off the day with a deeper look at Dish Network’s definitely-real 5G wireless service , and Walmart’s metaverse vision in Roblox is not looking good at all.


J
External Link
Jess Weatherbed11:49 AM UTC
Won’t anyone think of the billionaires?

Forbes reports that rising inflation and falling stock prices have collectively cost members of the Forbes 400 US rich list $500 billion in 2022 with tech tycoons suffering the biggest losses.

Jeff Bezos (worth $151 billion) lost $50 billion, Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin (worth a collective $182b) lost almost $60b, Mark Zuckerberg (worth $57.7b) lost $76.8b, and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey (worth $4.5b) lost $10.4b. Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer (worth $83b) lost $13.5b while his ex-boss Bill Gates (worth $106b) lost $28b, albeit $20b of that via charity donations.


T
Thomas Ricker6:45 AM UTC
Check out this delightful DART Easter egg.

Just Google for “NASA DART.” You’re welcome.


R
Twitter
Richard Lawler12:00 AM UTC
A direct strike at 14,000 mph.

The Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) scored a hit on the asteroid Dimorphos, but as Mary Beth Griggs explains, the real science work is just beginning.

Now planetary scientists will wait to see how the impact changed the asteroid’s orbit, and to download pictures from DART’s LICIACube satellite which had a front-row seat to the crash.


M
The Verge
We’re about an hour away from a space crash.

At 7:14PM ET, a NASA spacecraft is going to smash into an asteroid! Coverage of the collision — called the Double Asteroid Redirection Test — is now live.


E
Twitter
Emma RothSep 26
There’s a surprise in the sky tonight.

Jupiter will be about 367 million miles away from Earth this evening. While that may seem like a long way, it’s the closest it’s been to our home planet since 1963.

During this time, Jupiter will be visible to the naked eye (but binoculars can help). You can check where and when you can get a glimpse of the gas giant from this website.