Facebook offers a few different security features for users who want to protect their accounts. The Facebook Protect program is one of these offerings. The program is designed to help people in the public eye—like political candidates and elected officials—adopt stronger protections for their Facebook accounts.
You may be able to activate Facebook Protect to improve your account security. So what actually is it? And how can you activate Facebook Protect?
What Is Facebook Protect? Is Facebook Protect Free?
Facebook Protect is a free security program from Facebook. It provides users with additional security features that may help keep their accounts safe from hackers and others gaining unauthorized access.
The program does a few different things, including simplifying Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for Facebook accounts. You’ll need your password and another “factor of authentication” to log in to Facebook. The second authentication factor is a code sent to your phone, another device, or an app. Each time you log in, you’ll receive a new code.
Certain accounts with large platforms or the ability to reach many users may also be required to use Facebook Protect by default.
In early March 2022, some users were locked out of their accounts until they activated the feature. Many of these users had opted not to join the program because Facebook had sent spam-like emails telling them they needed to join. They did not receive Facebook Protect notifications through the platform itself.
This issue was not as severe as the Facebook outage of 2021. However, the mistake did lead to many users being unable to access the platform until support could help.
Facebook is still rolling out the Protect program, meaning that not all users will be eligible at the time of writing. However, even if you don’t have access to it, you can still activate many of its safety features and sidestep the Facebook Protect lockout.
How to Activate Facebook Protect
Follow these steps provided by Facebook to activate Protect:
- Click the down arrow in the top right of Facebook.
- Click Settings & Privacy, then Settings.
- Click Security and Login.
- Click Get Started under the Facebook Protect menu.
After you click Get Started, Facebook will provide a brief introduction to the program and scan your account for potential security vulnerabilities. Protect will then make security suggestions about making your account more secure. Often, these suggestions will include activating 2FA or adopting a stronger password.
Clicking Fix Now will take you to another menu where you can make these changes to your account. Activating 2FA and changing your password are fairly straightforward processes, meaning that starting Facebook Protect and making recommended security changes shouldn’t take too long.
You may have already received an email about activating Facebook protect. If it’s legitimate, it will have come from email@example.com. This URL is the correct address, even if it looks a little strange—Facebook uses this instead of the main facebook.com address for email notifications.
This email will provide instructions on activating Facebook Protect, but the steps above will work fine.
Other Ways to Improve Facebook Account Security
Your account may not be eligible for Facebook Protect yet. However, you still have access to most of the platform’s security features.
For example, all Facebook users can activate two-factor authentication for their accounts. Follow these steps to do so:
- Go to your Security and Login Settings page.
- Scroll down to the “Use two-factor authentication” option and click Edit.
- Choose a two-factor authentication method and follow the instructions on-screen.
You’ll be able to choose from a few different two-factor authentication methods, including your smartphone, another device, a physical security key, or an authenticator app. Any of these methods will provide some additional security for your account.
If you want to use a phone for 2FA, you’ll need to use a phone with a number already associated with your Facebook account. If you haven’t added a phone number to your account, you’ll need to do so before using a phone for 2FA.
Any Facebook user can also change their password to make it more secure. You can create your own secure password, of course, or use other resources to make a password that will keep your account safe, like trying out a password manager.
What You Need to Know About Facebook Protect
The right security settings can help you protect your Facebook account from hackers, scammers, or anyone else who may want unauthorized access.
Facebook Protect will scan your account’s security and make recommendations on how to better secure your account. Not all users have access to the program just yet, but everyone can take advantage of the security features the program recommends.