My personal Pinterest account was hacked last month. In the past 6 months, Pinterest spam and account hacking has appeared to increase significantly. The main reason people’s accounts are getting hacked? Hackers are realizing the huge potential for reach on Pinterest and people’s passwords are either too easy, or they use the same password for most of their accounts and one of their other accounts has been compromised in the past. SplashData released a list of the top 25 most common passwords for 2013. Is your Pinterest password on this list? The best way to avoid getting hacked is to make your password strong. If you ever believe your Pinterest may have been hacked, change your password immediately.
Photo via TheNextWeb
Your account is definitely hacked, now what?!
2) Change your password immediately.
3) Check for new pins.
4) Revoke Twitter & Facebook connections (just to be safe) and then reconnect.
5) Check & fix profile description, location, and website if needed.
Hackers using accounts to send spam-related pins is a new and effective tactic that has been a growing issue over the past year. To help prevent this, Pinterest has strict limits for sending pins as well as limits for following accounts too quickly. Since Pinterest is now driving so much traffic to external sites, hackers have realized the opportunity to reach large markets and are focusing more effort on hacking Pinterest accounts. Spammers reach these large markets by hacking accounts and pinning, Tweeting the pins or posting them on Facebook. They edit the pin URLs to lead to spam sites, pin spam pins to group boards, and send pins with websites linked to malware.
When you get a pin sent to you, always check the URL before repinning or clicking!
How to avoid being hacked
- Have a strong password.
- Report every spam pin you see. This helps prevent more spam pins from circulating.
- Change your password every so often.
- Have a different password for your Pinterest than anything else.
What to do if you think you’ve been hacked
1. Change password immediately.
~ Do this by clicking on your name at the top right, going to settings, and it’s the 2nd option.
2. Check your profile for recently pinned spam pins, report them, and delete them.
3. If your Pinterest is connected to your Twitter or Facebook, disconnect the accounts from your Pinterest and then reconnect, just to be safe.
4. Ask friends if they’ve received any “sent pins” from you recently (that you didn’t send).
~ Spammers use the Send Pin feature because it has a higher chance of someone opening the link and clicking through the pin because they have the perception it was sent from a friend they trust.
~ Always check the URL before clicking any pin and if you ever see a spam pin, report it right away.
5. Edit your profile information.
~ Make sure your description, website, and location are back to how they were before.
~ Many hacked accounts will have URLs as their description without any other information (see my hacked account screenshot below). I definitely don’t live in Paris (a girl can dream) and that is not my website. If your account is hacked, make sure nothing on your profile info has changed.
My account was hacked last month and all of my profile info was changed!
Need help? See this helpful video by Karen Clark giving visual steps on how to do these things.
Learn more about HelloSociety Pinterest marketing agency:
I've gotten that message twice within the last couple of months. I know I don't have a common password. I guess that is something Pinterest needs to work on. This is an extremely useful article. Thanks.
Yup, that's what mine looked like this morning when I logged in. Paris? Sure, I wish!
Great tips. Thanks!
@SmartOfficeHelp Thanks for commenting. Glad you found it helpful!
@RobinMiller I know, I was like, "Oh no my account!.... wait, Paris would be fun." Glad the article helped you!