Our World Got Turned Upside Down FACEBOOK INSTAGRAM Hacked!!!
This has been a wacky couple of months, since March, when literally Our World Got Turned Upside Down…our Facebook and Instagram Accounts were Hacked!!
In this crazy world of digital everything where technology is supposed to make our life better and easier…we were hacked!
We’re not telling you this to cause any panic. We were just shocked that it happened to our business accounts and wanted to get the word out. Maybe you haven’t heard from us in a while….this is Why.
We didn’t forget about you..Pinky Promise!!
We thought that our security measures for our business would insulate us from being hacked. We were so wrong!! They didn’t!!
We pride ourselves as not being one of the “Big Boys!” Instead we’re a small woman owned premier online source for custom designed and engraved products whose personalized service and products are not “cookie cutter” and our customers and their satisfaction is paramount to us and our business.So why were we targeted??
After doing some research, being hacked as a business is unfortunately not the exception but the norm nowadays. So much of what we do, save and interact with is digitally contained somewhere…being hacked puts all of that on hold.
Security is a fleeting concept in the age of technology. So when someone says the word “Hacked” we all get a little nervous since none of us want to think what personal information is out there floating around.
Rest Assured…A data breach is not what happened here! Instead when we were hacked, our business accounts with Facebook and Instagram were locked down and we in turn were locked out.
No matter how much we tried to resurrect our accounts and reclaim control, we couldn’t get them unlocked. We weren’t so easily swayed and we put our nose to the grindstone…motivated and determined to get this “trouble” fixed.
Over the past two months we have been through multiple attempts to take back our accounts utilizing all the resources we could find on the internet. We placed a minimum of 20…yes I did say 20…emails to any Facebook email address we could find, no longer can you contact them directly apparently. Frustration ensued!
Although Milo (above) found a way through, we weren’t so Lucky!
We weren’t going to give up or give in. Motivation is indeed a driving force. We would pull ourselves up by our bootstraps. We took Milo’s conviction and courage and used that as our inspiration. We chewed our way through this hoping to persevere. And guess what? We did!!!
Want to know how? Read On!!
How did we know we were hacked? It was a dark and stormy night….
Maybe it wasn’t but it did feel like that…something ominous was going to happen…hindsight is always 20/20!
No…it was just an ordinary day at Kustom Products Inc. until two months ago when we tried to log onto our Facebook business account and couldn’t get in.
That's strange, we thought but hey…we had recently relocated to Texas from Massachusetts and things can go a little haywire during moves. Things get lost, new connections and accounts with WiFi companies have to be installed, new WiFi passwords have to be set up…and even more importantly…
So our first inclination was…no worries…this is just a glitch. Maybe it was on our end or maybe it was on Facebook’s end. Who knows…we are not trying to assess blame to anyone. Facebook hasn’t been immune to problems and neither have we.
So we went about our day, filling orders, answering emails…the usual day in the life of Kustom Products Inc. with the thought, we’ll just log into Facebook tomorrow and go from there.
We didn’t think about our Instagram account at that time. As many of you know, Instagram is now owned by Facebook. They purchased them in 2012 with the caveat that “the app would continue to operate independently with minimal changes.” So we didn’t connect the two of them, we’ve always seen these two companies as separate entities. Our Bad!
Again, hindsight is 20/20 and we should’ve assumed that if there was a problem with our Facebook Account, maybe the same thing was happening to our Instagram Account. But we were being optimistic at the time, overly confident that all would be well.
But all was not well and…YES…our Instagram Account was locked too! So much for being optimistic! Should have thrown that salt over our shoulder.
Trying to fix this was more complicated than we thought. A lot of Facebook is automated now which has become a huge obstacle. Very difficult, if not impossible, to get to talk to a real person. Days went by and then weeks and then months with our frustration growing.
So why us?? It wasn't our fault but instead of suffering in silence…we went on the offensive and decided that this was not going to take us down. We were going to prevail!
We decided to bring the fire under control. There were still a million and one things to do. But to persevere we needed to focus on getting this fixed and setting up what was needed - so it wouldn’t happen again. Our determination to leave no stone unturned was the hallmark of this pursuit.
But we didn’t do it alone!
With a stroke of luck we connected with Cameron from www.hacked.com.
Cameron not only listened but heard us. He understood and could feel our frustration. He became vested in us. He made it his mission to stay and plow through this with us. All of us hoped the end result would be victory. When you coupled our motivation and determination and his persistence…we were triumphant!!!
“He was our Superman!!”
Just look at that picture at the beginning of this blog. That could be Cameron standing on the rock, looking at our upside down world, with his hands on his hips and determination in his stance and eyes, okay you can’t see all of that, but I bet you can picture it in your mind…Ha! Thought so!!.
Boy, this was a hard lesson to learn…But we did learn it!
We have now employed all the security precautions suggested by Facebook in their article How to Protect Your Account on Facebook and Instagram and a few tricks Cameron passed on.
But there were repercussions. Yes…some of them were financial…we haven’t been able to run our ads and now we’ve gone back to the drawing board to improve and enhance our marketing. Not always a bad thing…especially when you are looking at it with a new pair of eyes.
Still our biggest impact was not about money, it was about more important things… our customers…YOU…we didn’t and haven’t forgotten about you although it probably seemed like we did. Girl Scout promise!!!
This experience has been frustrating, trying, painful, distressing, nerve-wracking, traumatic, exhausting, unpleasant, daunting and frightening. But it has also been insightful, eye-opening, enlightening, thought provoking, and at times (of course towards the end), humorous.
From this experience we have learned compassion and sensitivity. It was not easy to confront that we’re not perfect or immune to bad things happening to us.
We are more self-aware of our limitations and this new perspective will give us the strength we need to move forward to face any challenges and future failures.
Yes… there will be future failures because none of us are perfect…
Would we even want to be?
We are hoping that this information enables you to avoid such a troublesome experience. In order to stem the tide, we want to give you some tools to protect your Facebook and Instagram Accounts.
Being Hacked recently also happened to Smart Marketer who has great courses that train our marketing team. Their Facebook Ad Account was hacked and in response they came up with What To Do When Your Facebook Ad Account Gets Hacked (Like Ours Just Did). In their blog they have 7 STEPS TO PROTECT YOUR FACEBOOK ACCOUNT FROM GETTING HACKED. This is a great resource for all of us. If you have a few minutes, it is worth looking at. John Grimshaw, CMO at Smart Marketer gives us a lot of great information that both businesses and individuals can use to protect themselves.
By using John’s information and other resources on the internet, we can now be vigilant and better prepared by protecting ourselves and our business. This is a lesson we should all take to heart. Our goal is to be aware and take the necessary precautions to stay prudent and attentive to our various accounts. I know we will be doing a much better job going forward.
P.S. Remember we didn’t forget about you!
P.S.S. You haven’t heard from us because we were Hacked and locked out of our Facebook and Instagram Accounts. But that is about to change! You will be hearing from us, Very Soon.