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9 Key Social Media Hacking Statistics in 2023

Social media has become an integral part of our daily lives. We use it to stay connected with friends and family, express ourselves, get news and information, promote our businesses, and much more. However, as social media usage continues to grow, so do risks associated with it. One of the biggest threats is social media account hacking.

According to studies, social media hacking has been steadily increasing over the past few years. Hackers are getting more sophisticated in their tactics, and many users still don‘t take proper security measures to protect their accounts. The result? Millions of social media users are falling victim to account takeovers, data breaches, identity theft, financial fraud and other types of cybercrime every year.

To help you understand the severity of this issue, I‘ve compiled a list of 9 alarming social media hacking statistics for 2023. These numbers highlight key trends and threats that can help you bolster your social media security in the coming year. Let‘s get started!

Key Social Media Hacking Statistics for 2023

  • 37% of Americans have experienced social media hacking
  • 30,000 websites are attacked daily
  • A ransomware attack occurs every 14 seconds
  • Social media cybercrimes account for $3.25 billion in losses
  • 53% of Facebook hacking incidents target credit card details
  • 26% of hacking victims have been hacked before
  • Social media hacking has risen 1,000% in the past year
  • 27% of hacked social media accounts result in financial losses
  • 1.4 billion social media accounts are hacked every month

The following sections provide more details on each of these key stats.

Detailed Social Media Hacking Statistics for 2023

1. 37% of Americans Have Experienced Social Media Hacking

According to a 2021 survey by NordVPN, 37% of Americans have been the victim of a social media hacking incident. The study found that Facebook is the most targeted platform, with 77% of hacking victims reporting attacks on their Facebook accounts.

This widespread issue shows that too many people still use weak passwords or don‘t enable two-factor authentication on their social accounts. It also highlights the appeal to hackers of obtaining access to so much personal data found on social media.

Additional surveys have put the percentage of Americans impacted even higher. For instance, a 2022 Identity Theft Resource Center study found that 43% of US social media users have experienced hacking.

Clearly, social media hacking is a prevalent threat that users need to take seriously.

2. 30,000 Websites Are Attacked Daily

Website hacking goes hand in hand with social media account takeovers. According to security firm WebARX, over 30,000 websites are attacked globally per day. While not all attacks are successful, this still represents a stunning amount of cyber hacking attempts.

Often the goal is to use vulnerabilities in websites to install malware that spreads to site visitors‘ devices. In other cases, hackers may target websites as a backdoor into connected databases and apps that house sensitive user data.

No matter the exact motive, the sheer volume of website attacks underscores the 24/7 persistence of cybercriminals. It also highlights why continuously monitoring for and patching vulnerabilities is so critical.

3. A Ransomware Attack Occurs Every 14 Seconds

Ransomware is one of the top cyberthreats facing individuals and organizations today. It involves malware that encrypts files and systems until a ransom is paid. According to research from Cyber Defense Magazine, a business falls victim to ransomware every 14 seconds. That‘s over 800 ransomware attacks per day!

Cybercriminals often use phishing emails and unsecured entry points like websites to implant ransomware. Once inside a network, it can spread rapidly to encrypt hundreds or thousands of computers. This can paralyze a business or organization.

Government agencies, hospitals, school districts and private companies of all sizes have been impacted by ransomware. Many opt to pay the ransom because the cost of downtime and data recovery is too great. Ransom amounts demanded by hackers frequently climb into the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars.

Clearly, the frequency of attacks shows the importance of training employees to identify phishing attempts. It also demonstrates the need for robust security solutions that identify and contain threats before they can do major damage.

4. Social Media Cybercrimes Account for $3.25 Billion in Losses

According to research from The SSL Store, social media cybercrimes inflicted $3.25 billion in global financial losses in 2020. These cybercrimes include everything from account hacking to identity theft, fraud, extortion and more criminal activity carried out on or through social platforms.

For businesses and social media influencers who rely on their accounts for sales and revenue, hacking can be financially devastating. A takeover attack can cut off access to hundreds of thousands of followers, erase account data, and enable the hacker to post content that damages brand reputation.

Individual users also suffer significant financial losses from social media cybercrime. Criminals steal login credentials and personal data to construct synthetic identities for credit card or loan fraud. Or they may contact a user‘s friends under false pretenses to scam them out of money.

These monetary losses demonstrate why users should be very selective in sharing personal details on social media. They also highlight the need for social platforms themselves to redouble efforts to identify and shut down cybercriminal activity.

5. 53% of Facebook Hacking Incidents Target Credit Card Details

Facebook is arguably the most valuable target for hackers given its unrivaled number of users and amount of personal data it harbors. According to The SSL Store research, 53% of successful Facebook hacking attacks aim to uncover users‘ credit card details.

In many cases, hackers use compromised accounts to directly steal credit card data entered for purchases made on Facebook. In other cases, they leverage personal info found in Facebook profiles to gather enough data to apply for fraudulent credit cards.

Once credit card numbers are obtained, hackers sell the data on dark web marketplaces. Buyers clone the cards to physical duplicates they can use in stores or for online purchases. This form of credit card fraud costs consumers and banks billions per year.

For Facebook users, these troubling stats mean being very careful about entering or storing any payment information within your profile or associated apps and games. Restrict app permissions, use unique complex passwords, and turn on two-factor authentication for all financial accounts to better protect your data.

6. 26% of Hacking Victims Have Been Hacked Before

According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), 26% of individuals hacked on social media in 2021 had been hacked before. This figure is actually down from 29% in 2020.

The decline is attributed to increased security awareness among some users who get hacked. They realize the need for stronger passwords, two-factor authentication and more vigilance after falling victim the first time.

However, more than one in four repeat victims show that the lesson doesn‘t sink in for everyone. Some users may feel ashamed about being hacked and don‘t report subsequent attacks. Or they may not take the time to properly secure their accounts after the initial breach.

The key takeaway is that hacking can happen to anyone. But taking proactive measures greatly decreases your risks of it happening again. Enable the strongest security options available and routinely check your privacy settings and account activity.

7. Social Media Hacking Has Risen 1,000% in the Past Year

According to a 2022 report by Socialproof Security, social media hacking attacks have spiked 1,000% in the previous 12 months alone. The study examined thousands of hacking reports and found the victims‘ most commonly held social platforms were Instagram (85% of attacks) and Facebook (25% of attacks).

Even more alarming, around 70% of victims said that after the hack, they were permanently locked out of their accounts and unable to recover them.

These figures highlight how serious and rapidly growing the social media hacking problem is. They also demonstrate how poor account recovery and customer service responses from the platforms themselves are failing users impacted by hacking.

8. 27% of Hacked Social Media Accounts Result in Financial Losses

The ITRC also reports that 27% of social media hacking victims surveyed stated they incurred direct financial losses from the account takeover. This could be due to scams, fraudulent posts made through their account asking friends for money, stolen account revenue, or data breach-related identity theft.

While two-thirds of those hacked did not report financial fraud as a result, more than one in four is still a substantial victim population. It illustrates how social media account takeovers feed serious cybercrimes that cost people real money.

9. 1.4 Billion Social Media Accounts Are Hacked Every Month

According to cybersecurity firm PurpleSec, approximately 1.4 billion social media user accounts are compromised through hacking each month. To arrive at this figure, the company analyzed worldwide hacking incidence rates across major platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

This global estimate highlights the sheer ubiquitousness of social media hacking. It means tens of millions of individual users are directly impacted every single month.

These massive numbers also reveal troubling inadequacies in the security systems and protocols of social networks. More stringent safeguards and standards are urgently needed to provide better protection against ever-more sophisticated cybercriminals.

While the major platforms are slowly rolling out improved security, like multi-factor authentication and breach notification services, there‘s much more work to be done. Users can‘t rely solely on the social networks to keep their accounts and data safe. Taking an active role is key.

How You Can Protect Your Social Media Accounts from Hacking

The sobering social media hacking stats make it clear that users must exercise more caution and implement key security measures themselves. Here are some top ways you can better protect your social accounts from takeover and fraudulent use:

Use Strong Unique Passwords

Weak reused passwords are behind the majority of account takeovers. Cybercriminals easily guess weak passwords or use password stealing malware and credential stuffing tools. Create a unique complex password for every important account at least 12 characters long using unpredictable character combinations.

Enable Two-Factor or Multi-Factor Authentication

Adding an extra layer of identity confirmation beyond your password significantly boosts account security. Multi-factor authentication makes it nearly impossible for hackers to access your accounts even if they steal your password. Activate it for your email, financial accounts, and social profiles.

Avoid Connecting to Public Wi-Fi

Using public Wi-Fi makes it easy for hackers to intercept your internet activity and implant malware or steal your login credentials through man-in-the-middle attacks. Limit social media use to password-protected home and work Wi-Fi. Use a VPN when on public networks.

Remove Unused Connected Apps

The more apps and services connected to your social accounts, the more vulnerabilities. Criminals can breach your account by compromising any linked third-party. Remove any unused apps with account permissions immediately.

Check Your Privacy Settings

Limit the personal details and posts you make public on social media to only trusted friends. Restrict your sharing settings and double check them often as networks frequently change options. The more private your activity, the less data hackers can steal.

Monitor Your Account Activity

Routinely check your social media account settings and login history for any suspicious access, posts or changes. Many networks allow you to receive alerts about logins from unrecognized devices. Act quickly to secure your account if you spot abnormal activity.

Use a Social Media Account Solely For Business

Don‘t mix business and personal activities on the same social media account. Keep them separate to limit losses if one gets hacked. Use the business account only for that purpose and keep personal details off of it.

Install Anti-Malware Software

Hackers can breach accounts by infecting devices with trojans and monitoring software. Install comprehensive internet security software like Norton or McAfee to protect all your devices. Perform regular system scans to detect and disable any malicious programs.

Staying vigilant is key. Just one mistake like reusing passwords or clicking a phishing link can compromise your social media accounts and data. But by consistently following security best practices, you can dramatically reduce your risks and frustrate cybercriminal efforts.

Social Media Hacking FAQs

If you still have questions about social media hacking risks and prevention, here are answers to some frequently asked questions:

Which social media platforms are most targeted by hackers?

Facebook and Instagram see the highest rates of hacking attempts due to their immense popularity and user data collection. However, in reality, all major social networks are heavily targeted.

Why do cybercriminals focus so much on hacking social media accounts?

Social media provides a treasure trove of personal data for hackers to exploit for financial gain through identity theft, credit card fraud, extortion scams, stealing login credentials to other sites, and spreading malware.

Do people ever pay the ransom demands from hackers?

Unfortunately yes, many users and businesses end up paying if the hacker completely locks them out of their account. For individuals whose livelihood depends on social media, the cost of rebuilding an account from scratch is too great.

Can you completely avoid being hacked on social media?

There‘s no 100% guarantee against hacking with anything on the internet. But you can minimize risks dramatically by activating security features, being selective in sharing information, and using unique complex passwords.

What should you do if your social account gets hacked?

Act quickly to regain control and secure it. Notify contacts of potential scams. Scan devices for malware and reset all account passwords. Enable new security protections. And monitor closely for suspicious future activity.

The Takeaway on Social Media Hacking

Reviewing these eye-opening social media hacking statistics for 2023 makes it clear that users need to take this threat much more seriously. Account takeovers and social media cybercrimes are surging. Both individuals and businesses can suffer significant emotional, reputational and financial damages as a result.

The good news is that by understanding key trends and implementing best practices, you can greatly enhance your protection against hackers. Use strong unique passwords, multi-factor authentication, account monitoring and updated privacy settings. Avoid public Wi-Fi, clear app permissions and watch for phishing attempts.

Stay vigilant in the coming year. As hacking techniques evolve, so should your social media security habits. With consistent caution and protective steps, you can deny cybercriminals the access they seek to your accounts and sensitive personal data.



Michael Reddy is a tech enthusiast, entertainment buff, and avid traveler who loves exploring Linux and sharing unique insights with readers.