Call Kurtis Investigation: What's behind the surge in Facebook lockouts?
LINCOLN -- More and more viewers are reaching out to Kurtis about being locked out of their Facebook accounts and losing access to important Facebook memories. Afraid those posts and moments were lost for good, they called on Kurtis Ming to investigate.
"When I see those memories, it kind of helps me connect to my past," said Sallie Snyder, "and the person I used to be."
The Lincoln resident says her Facebook memories help her remember her life prior to 2017 when she suffered a brain injury.
"I have a lot of gaps in my memory where I just don't recall things anymore," says Sallie.
But in November, Facebook disabled the account she's had since 2008, saying it "did not follow our Community Standards." But Sallie says she can't get ahold of anyone at Facebook to explain what she supposedly did wrong.
"They shut ever-y-thing down," Stacie McNally told CBS13. The Meadow Vista viewer found out that she, too, was locked out of her account on the day she expected to see a Facebook memory: the ninth anniversary of her Leukemia diagnosis.
"I like reading where my mind was at to remind myself of just how far I've come," she said.
And Roseville realtor Geanne Pack says that Facebook took down both her business and personal account, claiming she posted images they classified as child sexual exploitation, which she knows she did not do.
"I am frustrated. But more than that, I'm horrified," Geanne said. "This is not something to play with. This is not a joke. This is very serious."
In each of the three women's cases, Facebook's message stated, "if you think your account was disabled by mistake, you have 30 days to submit more information," including a picture ID for review, warning that "after that, your account will be permanently disabled." Each sent in the information, but say they quit hearing back and never regained access to their accounts.
"You're one person in millions of billions that have a problem and that can make fixing it really hard," CNET's Joan Solsman told CBS13, confirming that that social media giant has no number for users to call.
"Anyone who doesn't have the proper protections on their account - that's who they're targeting," Aaron Weaver of Hacked.com told the station. Saying that hackers are looking for ways to post banned content and scam ads, and are targeting people with simple or hacked passwords who don't have two-step authentication set up. Facebook finds the banned content and takes down the account. But when it comes to restoring it?
"They don't seem to be trying very hard in that department, right now," Aaron said about the company's customer service efforts.
And it's become such a problem that the company he works for has now set up a subscription service at $3.65 a month, which includes advocating for you with Facebook. Aaron says they have about an 85 percent recovery rate.
CBS13 reached out to Facebook nine times since November, trying to get them to confirm why so many are getting locked out of their accounts, and where people should turn if they are struggling to get the company to respond. They never answered those questions.
But, after Call Kurtis got involved, Facebook restored Sallie, Geanne's and Stacie's accounts.
"The hackers are winning and it's people like me and everyone else who's been affected by this that are losing," Stacie said.
It would be nice if Facebook could give a solution for viewers. There's got to be a better answer than Calling Kurtis!
Experts tell us you shouldn't count on your Facebook profile to always be there. But here's a way for you to download the contents of your entire profile to backup.
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