National Cybersecurity Awareness Month Updates

October 27, 2011 at 9:26am

Security and safety are at the core of Facebook. We have entire teams dedicated to building tools that give people even more control over their account and specifically the way they access their information. In fact, many of our most talented engineers are working exclusively on creating a secure environment on Facebook. This October, as part of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, we are working with others in the community to help educate people about techniques and tools for securing your devices and networks. Additionally, we thought this would be a great opportunity to tell you about some of the systems working behind the scenes to keep you and your data safe.


Today, we wanted to give you an update on some new features we will be testing in the coming weeks - Trusted Friends and App Passwords - and remind you of the many user tools we offer to help keep you secure on Facebook.


Trusted Friends



We're excited to begin testing this new tool to help you in case you ever get locked out of your account.  Similar to other features that help you prove your identity through your friends, you can now select three to five trusted friends who can help you if you ever have issues accessing your account.  It's sort of similar to giving a house key to your friends when you go on vacation--pick the friends you most trust in case you need their help.  


If you forgot your password and need to login but can't access your email account, you can rely on your friends to help you get back in.  We will send codes to the friends you have selected and they can pass along that information to you.


App Passwords




There are tons of applications you can use by logging in with your Facebook credentials.  However, in some cases, you may want to have a unique password for that application. This is especially helpful if you have opted into Login Approvals, for which security codes don't always work when using third party applications.


We are testing a feature that allows you to use app passwords for logging into third party applications. Simply go to your Account Settings, then the Security tab, and finally to the App Passwords section.  You can generate a password that you won't need to remember, just enter it along with your email when logging into an application.





Over the past few years we have introduced a number of new security tools - Login Approvals, Login Notifications, and One Time Passwords to name a few. In addition, we have developed several back-end systems to help keep you and your data secure. To better illustrate the full range of these features and show how they all work together to keep you safe while on Facebook we are releasing this infographic. Check it out to learn more about our security infrastructure and an overview of the tools available to all our users to increase their level of account security.


Our considerable work has undoubtedly made Facebook a safer environment - less than half a percent of users experience spam on any given day and only a fraction of a percent of our users ever experience any security-related issues. But we know there is plenty of more work to be done and we will keep striving to make sure that every time you log in to Facebook, you have a safe and social experience.  We are adapting and responding to new threats everyday and will continue to roll out new ways to protect your account. Be on the lookout for more announcements throughout the rest of this year, and remember to stay vigilant while online and remind others to do the same.


View the entire infographic here