How to reclaim a hacked YouTube account

Published November 3, 2020, 5:33 PM

by Jonathan Castillo

ABS-CBN’s YouTube channel was hacked earlier today, prompting its videos and the channel itself inaccessible. ABS-CBN has worked with YouTube to solve the matter as fast as possible.

A YouTube spokesperson said, “We take account security very seriously and notify account owners when we detect suspicious activity. If an owner has reason to believe their account was compromised, they can notify our team to secure the account and regain control.”

The issue has now been resolved and the ABS-CBN YouTube accounts are up and running again.

Now, you might think this issue was resolved quickly because ABS-CBN is a huge corporation. What about other YouTubers with smaller names or those only starting out. What to do if their accounts have been compromised?

Google has a support system that will allow you to secure you account. If you can still sign in, the steps are going to be simpler through this link.
In this section, you can view how many devices are signed into your account, see security events, and check if 2-Step Verification is on.

You change log out any devices you are not familiar with and right away change your password. It’s also good practice to at least check security events once in a while. This is where you will find if your any sign-ins from a new device or a sensitive account setting has been changed. If 2-Step Verification is off, now might be a good time to switch it on.

If you’ve been kicked out of your own account and have no access to it. Google has a link where you can recover your account. From here you will be able to choose from entering your password, getting a verification code from a backup email address, or another way to sign in altogether.

In the third option where you try to sign in another way, you will be asked if you have your phone. If yes, then Google will send a code straight to your number. If you don’t have your phone, Google will provide a form where you will be asked specific questions about your account, which only you should know about.

So, always keep your phone handy, since it simplifies the process. Again, we cannot stress enough to enable 2-Step Verification as that reduces the risk of getting hacked. It helps a lot to have a backup email, one that you never use unless it’s for recovering your primary email. Make sure 2-Step Verification is also on in that account.

Make sure you enter strong passwords, using a combination of upper and lower cases, numbers, and symbols. Make sure the password isn’t related close to you, like your birthday or the name of your child, spouse, or dog.
Sometimes a strong password is not enough. It’s the websites you visit that may have paved the way for getting hacked. This is happens frequently on social media where scammers big names such as Elon Musk with cleverly designed pictures and backgrounds to fool followers.

It can get difficult to spot what’s real and what’s fake as these scammers improve their techniques. So, one recommendation is, when seeing a giveaway on social media, try to check the company’s own website if they have posted anything about their giveaway.

The first step of spotting a scam online is how the giveaway is presented. If it asks you to send money or provide any information, especially financial information, then that is one big red flag. Most scams will rely on your impulses, so look around the internet first for verification. And again, never reveal any sensitive information online.