In a completely bizarre incident, Facebook is locking people who report scammers, fake accounts, and impersonators out of the accounts for days. Due to this, #FacebookLockout is trending on twitter with many users angry at the social network’s strange behavior.
Here’s what’s happening, if you report an impersonating account, Facebook will lock your account and ask for an ID for verification. However, even if you scan your ID, it won’t let you in. Check out the video below for example:
2/ Thousand's of facebook user's facing this sh**ty problem! just tap this hashtag here #FacebookLockout
Just like this clip! pic.twitter.com/IBbCtbszBl
— Sayeed Joy (@thesayeedjoy) October 13, 2019
As Cory Comer, who got locked out for more than a week, highlights in his Twitter thread, this affects Facebook pages and Instagram ads too. That means admins who manage such pages can’t access business accounts, and might even lose money.
2/ The #FacebookLockout affects #facebook, @FBBusiness, @Instagram Ads, and 3rd party Facebook Authentication. All manner of login pages are automatically redirected to single verification page with a photo upload requirement.
— Cory Comer (@corywcomer) October 14, 2019
Definite affect . Loss of profits , disgruntled customers , a knock on effect in terms of looking unprofessional. Affected ad campaigns and so on . #facebooklockout
— Kara (@Karascents) October 13, 2019
These incidents are not quite new. Some folks were reporting this issue back in July.
@facebook when are you going to acknowledge that there are serious issues for thousands of users? You locked me out of my decade old account, and SMS code verification is dead along with Friends photo verification system. Acknowledge then proceed to fix, been already a WEEK, plz!
— policymaker (@The_Policymaker) July 10, 2019
— Cory Comer (@corywcomer) October 11, 2019
This is not just an issue for accessing accounts. There’s a security threat at play as well. Last month, security researcher, Sayeed Joy, created a fake account of Android Police’s founder, Artem Russakovskii, and managed to lock out the real account by reporting it. He managed to get into his account by contacting Facebook, however, he was locked out last night again.
— Artem Russakovskii (@ArtemR) September 23, 2019
TNW sent an email to Facebook to understand more about the issue last night. At the time of writing the story, there’s no word from the company.
There are core questions of ways users can access their accounts and reach out to Facebook support. A lot of people couldn’t reach the support forms, because, well…they were locked out. Plus, there’s no clarification as to why despite providing valid IDs, people were still unable to access their accounts.
There’s an issue of identity theft as well. Like any sane person, you would think of reporting an impersonator using tools provided by Facebook. But they are useless if they kick you out of the account for several days.