US online searches for ‘Facebook account hacked’ surge 93% YTD, almost double 2020 figure

Ruth C. | September 15, 2021

Facebook has had its fair share of security mishaps over the years, and 2021 is no exception. This may explain why a record number of people in the United States are scouring the web for information about Facebook account hacks. 

According to the data analyzed by the Atlas VPN team, average monthly searches for the keyword ‘Facebook account hacked’ have grown by a whopping 93% since last year. This year alone, US internet users have looked up the keyword 159,000 times compared to 82,300 times in the entire year of 2020. 

If we look at the historical data, the searches for the keyword ‘Facebook account hacked’ have increased 188% since 2016 when they were at 55,208. 

The analysis is based on the keyword search volume data provided by Ahrefs. The analyzed data encompasses the period from January 2016 till July 2021.

The keyword reached a record number of monthly searches in July of 2021 when it hit 40,000. The second most searches for the keyword were recorded in April of this year, totaling 28,000. Meanwhile, May 2021 occupies the third spot on the list with 25,000 searches. 

Peaks in the keyword searches this year coincide with Facebook’s security crisis. In April, sensitive data, including phone numbers of 533 million Facebook users from 106 countries was scraped and posted on a hacking forum. 

While Facebook had its fair share of security and data breaches in the past, Internet searches about hacked Facebook accounts only blew up this year. It suggests that people are getting more conscious about their cybersecurity.

Top 6 countries with the most ‘Facebook account hacked’ searches per month

While the US has seen an upsurge in searches about hacked Facebook accounts, most internet inquiries on the topic come from India. 

On average, people in India search the keyword “Facebook account hacked” 165,000 times per month. Searches in India alone make up 55% of the total monthly global search volume. 

The second spot on the list goes to Bangladesh, with an average of 33,000 monthly searches. The country constitutes one-tenth of the monthly global search volume for the “Facebook account hacked” keyword. 

Other countries in the top five include the Philippines and Pakistan with 19,000 monthly searches each, the US with an average of 17,000 monthly searches, and Nigeria with an average of 8,700 searches per month. On average, the keyword is looked up 307,000 times each month across the world.

What to do if your Facebook account has been hacked?

No one wants to learn that their social media account has been compromised. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to mitigate the situation.

Change Facebook password. If you have noticed strange activity in your Facebook account, chances are it has been compromised. Your first set of action steps should be to change your Facebook password immediately to prevent the hacker from taking advantage of your account further.  

To change your password, go to “Settings”, then “Security and Login”. There, scroll down to “Login” and click “Change Password”.

Disconnect your other sessions.  Once you change your password, the next important step is to log out all devices out of your Facebook account. This way, the hacker should be signed out too, and with a changed password, no longer able to re-access your account. 

To log out of the Facebook sessions, go back to the “Security and Login” menu and click on “Logout all sessions”.

Update your other passwords. If you use the same password for Facebook as you do elsewhere (strongly not recommended), change that password as soon as possible. It will help prevent hackers from compromising your other accounts.

Report it to Facebook. If you can no longer access your Facebook account, you can report the event here. In most cases, Facebook will help recover access to your account. 

Remove suspicious apps. Whenever you give Facebook access to an app, you risk the security of your account. Therefore, it is possible that your Facebook account was compromised via a malicious app. In this case, you can address the problem by removing the app’s access to your account.  

To do this, go to “Settings,” then “Apps & Websites,” and disconnect the apps one by one. 

Check out our previous reports on social media cybersecurity:

Social media threats for payment services jump over 550% in 2021 Q2

LinkedIn phishing scams most clicked with a 47% open rate in Q3 2020

Ruth C.

Ruth C.

Cybersecurity Researcher and Publisher at Atlas VPN. Interested in cybercrime, online security, and privacy-related topics.



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