What should you do when your phone number is connected to somebody else’s Facebook account? It happens more often than you might think: you forget your Facebook password, or get locked out, so you try to initiate the mobile recovery process by putting in your cell number to have Facebook text you a code, and when you enter the code somebody else’s profile picture and account come up.
In fact, earlier this year VentureBeat reported on someone who had this exact problem. As Elliott Beck related to VentureBeat, when he tried to log into his Facebook account after having not accessed it for several months, he couldnt remember his password and so initiated a password reset by having a code texted to his cell phone.
Once Beck received the code via text message, he entered it in order to access his Facebook account, however… it wasn’t his Facebook account that he accessed. Said Beck, “I had a different picture, and then a message popped up from somebody else that wasn’t anybody I knew, that was written in Spanish. Then I realized I’m on someone else’s page.”
How does this happen? Well, it can happen in a couple of ways:
- You got a phone number that belonged to somebody else first, and they associated that phone number with their Facebook account, and then changed phone numbers, never removing their old (now your) phone number from their Facebook account
- The other person signed up for Facebook before you, and typoed their phone number as yours when they signed up for Facebook, and never verified it (because they couldn’t, because they don’t actually have the phone associated with that phone number)
So what to do about it?
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Well, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so if you aren’t reading this because it just happened to you, then go right now to your Facebook account mobile number settings and remove any old telephone numbers, and make sure that your current cell number is verified. Also be sure to check that your email address is up-to-date, and if you have a land line or alternate cell number, add that too, so that if you do end up with the situation where you have somebody else’s cell number as your password or account access recovery number, Facebook has an alternate way to contact you.
But what if this has already happened to you, and that’s why you’re reading this?
Fortunately, Facebook has a form that you can fill out for just this situation, and yes, you can access it even if you aren’t logged in to Facebook. Of course, it may take them a bit of time to resolve the issue, or get back to you (or they may just resolve the issue without getting back to you).
What to Do When Your Phone Number is Associated with Someone Else’s Facebook Account
If you find that your telephone number is associated with somebody else’s Facebook account, all is not lost. In fact, Facebook has a form that is specifically for reporting just such an issue, so we guess it must happen a not insignificant amount of the time.
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In order to fill out the form you will need to know who your cell carrier is, as well as, of course, the telephone number in question. If you are not logged in to Facebook, you will also need to provide your email address – be sure it is the email address associated with your Facebook account (which is why, above, we advise you to always make sure that Facebook has the right email address for you).
Once you have all of that information ready, you can find Facebook’s form for reporting an issue with verifying your account
(Note that this information is current as of November, 2019)
No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free? Thank you!
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