Tech Made Simple

Hot Topics: How to Fix Bluetooth Pairing Problems | Complete Guide to Facebook Privacy | How to Block Spam Calls | Snapchat Symbol Meaning

author photo

What is Facebook Account Cloning & What Can You do about It?

by on June 17, 2022
in Facebook, Computers and Software, Computer Safety & Support, Tips & How-Tos :: 66 comments

Techlicious editors independently review products. To help support our mission, we may earn affiliate commissions from links contained on this page.

Facebook account cloning is a simple scam – but it’s easy to be fooled by it. A cloned account is a copy, that uses your profile photo and other public information to trick your friends into giving up their information. It may seem like a harmless prank, but these clones can cause real damage. A cloned account may convince your friends to send them money, collect passwords or other information, or dupe them into other scams.

Account cloning isn’t a hack or an exploit – it’s just a result of clever scammers using your publicly available information to fool your friends. Pretending to be you, the cloned account could message your friend saying they need cash to handle some emergency – for example, being mugged and needing funds to get back home. You may think your friends are too smart to fall for a scam like that, but because these requests come from you, they may respond without thinking.

And that’s why you need to worry about Facebook account cloning. Whether it’s your account or a friend’s that’s been cloned, there’s real harm in this “prank.”

How do I know if my Facebook account has been cloned?

You can search Facebook for your name to see if there are other accounts pretending to be you, but it’s likely that there’s someone else on Facebook who legitimately shares your name. So while you can do this to look for duplicates, be aware that not every result will be someone maliciously cloning your account.

But you’re far more likely to find out your account has been cloned after the fact, when your friends notice odd behavior from you on Facebook. Before a cloner can scam your friends, they have to send them a friend request from their cloned account, which can set off red flags for the security savvy. If they accept your friend request without thinking, they’ll start receiving messages that may not sound like you. If a friend tells you they’ve gotten a friend request or a suspicious message, your account may have been cloned.

What should I do if my Facebook account has been cloned?

Facebook doesn’t allow accounts to impersonate others, so if you find a clone account you should report it to Facebook. Just go to the cloned profile and:

  1. Click the “…” icon in the upper right of their profile page.
  2. Select “Report Profile.”
  3. Follow the instructions onscreen to report the account for impersonating you.

Phone held in hand showing the Facebook Profile Settings page you see when you click on the triple dots in the upper right of their profile page.

Once you’ve reported the page, post to your timeline and tell friends not to accept new friend requests from you, and to ignore any messages that might be scams.

How do I know if my Facebook account has been hacked rather than cloned?

When your account is cloned, someone on Facebook is pretending to be you. But when your account is hacked, someone is actually using your Facebook account to be you. Though cloning is more common, you should check to be sure no one has access to your account. Here's how to check if your Facebook account has been hacked:

  1. Open Facebook from your web browser.
  2. Click the triangle in the upper right to open the menu, then select "Settings & privacy."
    Screenshot of Facebook showing the triangle menu icon pointed out in the upper right corner and the dropdown menu showing the privacy and settings option
  3. Select "Settings."
  4. Click Security and Login in the left-hand column.
  5. The “Where You’re Logged In” section tells you every device that’s logged on to your account, and when they last logged on. Click “See More” to see a full list, and review each login to decide if it’s you.
    Screenshot of Facebook Security and Login settings showing Where you're logged in with the triple dot menu opened next to Samsung Galaxy A52 5G login with the options Not You? and Log out.

If every login was you, then you have nothing to worry about.

What should I do if my Facebook account has been hacked?

If there are any logins you don’t recognize in the list of "Where you're logged in," click the menu button to the right and select “Not You?” to report it to Facebook. When you've finished reporting the unrecognized logins, select the option to "Log out of all sessions." This will boot out the hacker. After that, change your password and set up two-factor authentication for extra security – you’ll find both options on the Security and Login page.

Even if you haven’t been hacked, it’s a good idea to turn on alerts for unrecognized logins. When it’s enabled, Facebook will tell you if an unrecognized device logs on to your account, so you’ll know if a hacker has access to your account immediately. To turn it on:

  1. Open Facebook from your web browser.
  2. Click the triangle in the upper right to open the menu, then select "Settings & privacy."
  3. Select "Settings."
  4. Click Security and Login in the left-hand column.
  5. Scroll down to “Setting Up Extra Security.”
  6. Click "Edit" next to “Get alerts about unrecognized activity.”
  7. Select “Get notifications” and then choose an email address (or email addresses) to be notified by email.
  8. Click "Save Changes."

How can I avoid Facebook account cloning?

Start by hiding your Facebook friends list. Anyone who clones your account will use your friends list as a list of targets, but if your friends list is private, it’s much harder for them to find anyone who will fall for their scams. Fortunately, hiding your friends list only takes a few quick clicks:

  1. Open Facebook from your web browser.
  2. Click the triangle in the upper right to open the menu, then select "Settings & privacy."
  3. Select "Settings."
  4. Click "Privacy" in the left-hand column.
  5. In the "How people find and contact you" section, check to see who you have selected as being able to see your friends list. If it's "Public" or you want to change who can see your friends list, move on to step 6.
  6. Click on "Edit" next to "Who can see your friends list?"
  7. In the drop-down menu, select who you would like to see your friends list.

And while you're looking at your Facebook settings, it's never a bad time to review your privacy settings. Keeping your information locked down is the best way to keep yourself safe, so take a minute to review your other settings.

Updated on 6/17/2022 with current instructions on how to change your settings.

[Image credit: Techlicious]

Elizabeth Harper is a writer and editor with more than a decade of experience covering consumer technology and entertainment. In addition to writing for Techlicious, she's Editorial Director of Blizzard Watch and is published on sites all over the web including Time, CBS, Engadget, The Daily Dot and DealNews.

Discussion loading

I'm not sure why I'm seeing another person's FB profile and friends while trying to get into my own

From Heather DiCosmo on April 09, 2019 :: 3:32 am

I’m not sure why I’m seeing another person’s FB profile pic &his; friends every time I try to login to my account. I’m not a hacker, I’m not sure what’s going on here. Can someone please help me resolve this bc I don’t want anyone seeing my personal private stuff or my accounts or pictures.


Can you clarify?

From Josh Kirschner on April 09, 2019 :: 11:14 am

Are you seeing someone else’s pic before you log in or after you log in? If it’s before you log in, that’s just because that person used your device to log in to Facebook previously. You can change that by clicking the X in the corner of the picture to “Remove account from this page”.

If you’re seeing someone’s picture after you log in, are you sure you’re logging in with your credentials and not someone else’s credentials who were saved on your device and are being autofilled during the log in?


delete cookies / clear cache

From Lia on January 08, 2021 :: 4:57 am

It’s possible that that other account has used that device you are trying to login from ie. You bought a used phone or used computer that wasn’t properly wiped, or you are on a public computer.

Try clearing your cache and deleting your cookies, and see if that helps.


Account cloning

From Mark Saulys on June 23, 2019 :: 11:05 am

If the clone of your account blocks your original account then you won’t be able to find the clone account ina search, correct?


Yes, that's likely the case

From Josh Kirschner on June 24, 2019 :: 10:49 am

When someone blocks you on Facebook, they don’t show up in your searches, so that shouldn’t be any different for a cloned account. And it is probably a pretty smart idea for scam accounts to block you for that reason. However, you could always find those accounts by searching from the account of a friend or spouse to help with reporting them.


Khan khan

From Bashir khan on June 11, 2023 :: 1:46 am

The “Where You’re Logged In” section tells you every device that’s logged on to your account, and when they last logged on. Click “See More” to see a full list, and review each login to decide if it’s you.



From Dan P. on July 10, 2023 :: 5:56 pm


Thanks for the recommendations. I did find a Linux-based system logged in. Dumped that one. FB then took me through a further security check. Have a good one.


Facebook has disapeared

From Pamela whelan on October 05, 2019 :: 4:31 pm

My facebook and messenger just vanished.said I had suspicious activities and won’t let me log back in.its asking for a photo Id which won’t let me upload.somebody made a fake profile of me last week so think it has something to do with that.but how do I get my page and messenger back as I’ve my business page linked to it and I can’t access it


Please check if I have been hacked or cloned.

From Sylvia Atkin on November 10, 2019 :: 6:19 pm

I have seen where friend request have been made but I did not do it.  Also messages have been send from me that I did not do.  Please check and let me know.


Instant Messenger

From Keith on December 06, 2019 :: 11:05 am

How do I stop a hacker sending out instant messages with my profile picture and name asking for money


Report the other profile to Facebook

From Josh Kirschner on December 06, 2019 :: 11:19 am

There’s not much you can do to stop people from cloning your profile, all you can do is report it after the fact. (Note, these aren’t “hackers”, just impostors). But if you follow our steps above on how to avoid it (that is, make your account less interesting to cloners), it’s unlikely people will try to clone your account in the future.


Behind Facebook.

From Larry on July 08, 2023 :: 3:19 am

In my quest to get my hacker I stumbled on an area of Facebook most don’t this area there are people who write programs in story format and make designs from the code.they talked about being in pipes or tunes and made comments about how nobody will see this coming.the person I think hacked my Facebook I basically confirmed in this area using an Apple gif hack his name was at top of a paragraph near more comp code referring to FB could also see posts from along time ago and any conversations you had for a long get there this still works last I tried.put curser on blue banner in our Facebook home page and right click there should be 4 options I think it’s number 3 I think but you can try all.its all written in Json.there is a program in there below fb static I think it was don’t copy and paste into Google unless you want Google to contact you by calling you while IT Guy screams at you online.they may block you for speaking as the former copy and paste it guy and just Google it.the F word was used a plenty that



From Michael Murray on November 04, 2021 :: 1:32 pm

My Facebook account was cloned about six weeks the the person who cloned it logs in from London UK I reside in Aberdeen Scotland. There is no way I can get a password to sign in.Facebook won’t let me log into my account without a password or use forgotten password. My Facebook friends and family members and myself have reported this to Facebook but so far nothing has been done this person is still sending friend requests and messages trying to get my friends involved in financial deals.I have many friends and nostalgic photographs on Facebook.



From Neha on March 17, 2020 :: 2:50 pm



FB cloning and messenger

From Kate on April 24, 2020 :: 8:47 am

So, I received a message from the boyfriend of a friend, and when confronted about it, the boyfriend claimed he knew nothing about it and that his account was cloned. When I go to messenger and click on the message, then request to view the profile that sent it, I’m taken back to the boyfriend’s real profile. He claims that the cloned account connected the two. Is this possible?


Don't see how that is possible

From Josh Kirschner on April 24, 2020 :: 12:25 pm

I can’t answer definitively about what is going on without more details, but I don’t see a way that a message from a cloned Facebook account could redirect back to the real account.


Not at all helpful

From T Bradley on May 17, 2020 :: 3:50 pm

My wife is victim of a clone profile - of course, all the buttons such as “give feedback” or “report this profile” are deleted from the menu on the profile page. So, while it’s probably not even on the Facebook platform, it’s still a good copy and can be used for the same nefarious reasons in pretty much the same way. So, not helpful. (But no complaints - Facebook itself provides exactly the same unhelpful advice, with nowhere to report this variation on the situation.)


That's not possible on Facebook

From Josh Kirschner on May 18, 2020 :: 9:54 am

There’s no way to remove the Report Profile option on a Facebook profile page. Are you saying this is a profile on Facebook that you can’t report or a profile off Facebook you can’t report (which if that’s the case, not clear why you’re blaming Facebook for something not on their platform)? Can yo provide a link here to the profile you’re concerned about so I can review in more detail?


Face book clone

From Anne Babinaga on August 23, 2022 :: 12:51 pm

Some one cloned my Facebook, on the 2nd August 2022 at about 1pm gmt (UK London time) used photos from my own account, sent out numerous friend requests and is going into inboxes asking for money to be sent to a Ugandan number
I have reported to Facebook, asked friends to report too.
But the cloned account is still open,. Please help me,
Bernadette so it can be closed
Use the link below and share [redacted]


Facebook cloning??

From Rick on June 14, 2020 :: 12:55 pm

I have a different situation. Someone by a totally different name is using my email and phone number for their account. If I log out of my account and go back in and type in my username and password it takes me to their account and not my original?? What is that and how do I fix it?


It's not possible to work the way you're describing

From Josh Kirschner on June 16, 2020 :: 2:30 pm

Email is a unique identifier in Facebook, so there is no way for two accounts to be sharing the same email address. If you try to create a new account using an email address already in use, it will simply take you into account recovery mode.

Without being able to see exactly what you’re seeing, it’s hard to say what is going on. But if you could provide more detail on your account and the other account, I can take a look. If you don’t want to post the account IDs here, you can email them to me at josh at techlicious dot com and I will respond back in the comments.


Cloned but can’t find the clone to report it

From Dorothy on July 03, 2020 :: 9:18 pm

I’ve been cloned, but I’ve searched for another account of name and found nothing. 
So how can I report that account if I can’t find it.
My friends are telling me they are getting friend requests and messages.
Very frustrating
Thank you


Cloned or hacked old account

From Sarina Bezuidenhoud on September 15, 2020 :: 2:21 pm

I think my previous profile account has been cloned or hacked. What can I do to delete that account or remove it.


Follow this advice

From Josh Kirschner on September 17, 2020 :: 9:59 am

We have an article that walks you through the steps to delete an old Facebook account. Though if it has been hacked, you may no longer be able to access it, in which case you will need to recover your hacked Facebook account first. If your account has been cloned, deleting your real account is probably a bad idea, because then only the cloned account will be out there. Instead, report the cloned account and get that removed first.


Cloned Facebook account

From Neil Hughes on September 21, 2020 :: 11:58 am

My wife’s friend has been receiving messages from an account bearing her name, but it isn’t her account. I’ve asked the friend to send me the link to the site so I can take action and report it, but she is unable to do so. When she taps the profile picture which usually enables you to copy the link, a message headed “content not found” is displayed. Is there any other way to get rid of this fake account?


Sounds like it has already been removed

From Josh Kirschner on September 21, 2020 :: 10:30 pm

If you’re seeing the content not found message,  the profile has likely already been removed. Is she still getting those messages after she saw the “content not found”?


Facebook issue

From Melissa Martin on October 08, 2020 :: 9:30 am

My account was hacked several weeks ago. The person was able to change my email address to his and he changed my name on my facebook profile and made it his name. All of my friends can see his name under my picture and it is creepy.  I tried to report this with no help.  I created a new page and now that has been disabled.  I know it is tied to the hacking. How can I get around this?


How did you report it to Facebook?

From Josh Kirschner on October 13, 2020 :: 8:59 am

You’re able to report your account being hacked here: Is that what you tried already? If so, the next step should be to have your friends report the account as hacked by going to the profile and reporting it as “Pretending to be someone”. That may get the account shut down, rather than recovered, but it may be your best option if Facebook isn’t responding to your hacked request.


Friend's Messenger was cloned.

From Paulette Vaughn on October 11, 2020 :: 9:27 pm

She has deleted her messenger to try to stop them but “she” is still sending messages.  I tried to report from a message sent to me but it won’t let me submit after I choose who is cloned.  What can she do?  She as already reported with no response.


Keep reporting it

From Josh Kirschner on October 13, 2020 :: 9:01 am

Keep reporting the profile and have her other friends report the profile, as well. Hopefully, sooner or later, Facebook will take care of it.


dissaperence of my Face book page

From peter griffith on December 11, 2020 :: 8:53 pm

facebook suddenly vanished on the 10th Ddecember 2020off my computor without warning and asked me to nopen anew account when i did they told me there was someone with the same name AS me already on that account there was no way i new how to tell them it was me so ive no way of entering facebook i am 90 and not to bright with these computors but not dim either will some one please help


What happens if I accept a friend request from a cloned account

From Question on December 13, 2020 :: 10:10 am


I accepted a friend request from a friend I’m already friends with. Is my account now at risk?



Facebook Troubles

From Judith Anne McEvoy on December 18, 2020 :: 12:50 am

I updated my e-mail on Facebook months ago and now my old e-mail is showing and I can’t delete it.  When I try to add a new email address I get the message that someone else already has a facebook account with the email address I’m trying to add.
Does that mean I’ve been hacked or cloned?


A couple of possibilities

From Josh Kirschner on December 19, 2020 :: 3:48 pm

It’s possible someone set up a Facebook account using your email address, though they would have had to have had access to your email to do that. More likely is that you set up a second Facebook account accidentally with that email. The best option is to try to access Facebook with that other email address and see what comes up. If it is asking for a different password than your normal Facebook password, go through the password recovery process to get access and see what’s up.


Facebook Troubles

From Judith Anne McEvoy on January 09, 2021 :: 11:38 am

Thank you for responding..I actually tried setting up a facebook account with the new email address and it let me…now I’m deleting the new one and after the 30 days will try to change my email again…any ideas on why I can’t copy and paste anymore?


Shared screen shots

From Will on January 19, 2021 :: 12:58 pm

I lost my job months ago and screenshot swere sent to coworkers. I never sent hoe do I prove this?


I'm trying to find my "Followers" button which has disappeared.

From Jan Tatangelo on February 20, 2021 :: 11:16 pm

I was getting emails when someone followed me. They looked like fake accts so I blocked them especially since we didn’t have anyone in common. I got FB requests from them.  Surprise. As a senior, I get a ton of requests, all widowed, military, with a dog or kids. Creeps!  I would like to zap them before I get requests from them.  My “Followers” button has disappeared completely. I’ve tried to contact FB to get some help but they can’t be contacted. 
I really appreciate your expertise and giving help to the people who need it.  Thank you.


Hacked or Cloned?

From Orin Howell on April 07, 2021 :: 10:22 am

I made an appreciation comment on my county clerk’s page. There was no indication the page was connected to FB.  Not being a FB user or having an account, now I have one. On my phone messaging, I keep getting friend requests. Have I been hacked or cloned. I’ve been told there is another person on FB with my name. His FB account is valid. How can I get my name removed as I don’t want a FB account?

Thanks in advance for your assistance.


Could be phishing for Facebook logins

From Josh Kirschner on April 08, 2021 :: 10:40 am

If you try to create a Facebook account using a phone number or email, Facebook will require you to confirm that you own that email/number via a confirmation email or SMS. So it’s impossible to “accidentally” create an account.

Unless you went through that confirmation process (and are 100% sure you never created a Facebook account in the past), it’s more likely that the text messages you’re getting are phishing attempts that are trying to trick you into logging into Facebook on a fake login page. You could verify this by looking at the links and seeing what the url is - if it’s not, it’s definitely phishing. Note that sometimes people create urls that look like Facebook, e.g., with foreign letters, but really aren’t, so it can be a little tricky to tell the difference. And some links could, potentially, bring you to sites with malware, so I’m not recommending you click the links.

Note that there was just a major hack of Facebook user data and it wouldn’t surprise me if we see an uptick in phishing attempts connected with that.



From Navidad on April 28, 2021 :: 6:39 pm

Hello I was wondering is their any way Facebook can track a clone account that was made of me even If the person deactivated the account? Like can Facebook tell me what country or state the account was made in it’s all I wanna know


They can, but they won't

From Josh Kirschner on April 29, 2021 :: 8:55 pm

I’m sure Facebook has data on the IP address associated with account creation. But they’re not going to release that data, absent a court order, for obvious privacy reasons. There’s also the possibility that whomever created the closed account, did so using a VPN or other means to hide their true IP address, so the data wouldn’t be useful, anyhow.


Obviously my experience is different

From John on May 02, 2021 :: 3:03 pm


I have been cloned on every platform.  My iPhone is cloned, my SIM cloned and Facebook & Messenger cloned.  Can’t stop them from getting back in.  I have 2 factor but they obviously use the cloned SIM to get back into my Facebook account.  Change SIM but obviously they have a near yo the victim method of cloning SIM again.  Isn’t there any other way of securing my Facebook account?  Why isn’t there 3 factor authentication?


Facebook Messenger Cloning

From Les Williams on May 28, 2021 :: 7:01 pm

I understand what you wrote about in your FB account cloning and how to deal with that but what do you do when it appears someone has cloned your FB Messenger app?


No longer have access to my business account

From Mark Riemer on September 05, 2021 :: 2:21 am

In 2013 I made a business page from my personal account.  Recently I noticed that this business account is no longer listed on the left-hand column of my personal page. The only way for me to get to my business page is by looking under my work history and clicking on my business there.  However, when I get to my business page there is no way for me to edit the page, post anything or change settings….Its as if I am now a visitor on my own page.  Last night someone added a “Shop on website” button to my business page that sends people to a chinese link selling puppies.  I have written Facebook twice but have gotten no replies.  How can I regain access to my account, OR get the page taken down?


You just have to hope Facebook takes action

From Josh Kirschner on September 08, 2021 :: 11:21 am

At some point in the past, your Facebook credentials were hacked/phished and your business account was taken over. Here’s one common way scammers are phishing business Facebook account logins.

Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do other than report it to Facebook as a hacked account and hope they take action. You might have more luck if you create an advertising account and try to get support through that, though I’m just grasping for straws here.

Note that if you use the same login for your business and personal Facebook accounts, it also means your personal login credentials were compromised. So it is imperative that you change your password and, ideally, turn on two-factor authentication.


Thanks for the reply...I have

From Mark Riemer on September 29, 2021 :: 12:47 pm

Thanks for the reply…I have had two-step authentification on since I was first hacked a year ago, back when Facebook actually had a support CHAT….Now, I have reported the hack on 15-18 different ways, asked friends and students to report it…and get NO reply, or Facebook says I haven’t proved any hack….Any idiot would see that my Vocal Practice wouldn’t be selling chinese dogs…My ad account for my business is also gone, so no way to get support there…


Hacked account - how do I retrieve it?

From Primmy on September 27, 2021 :: 11:09 am

Someone hackef my account and for some odd reason I was just oblivious to what they were doing… They were helping me set up the 2 way factor verification and then asked for my password then I couldnt access it a few hours later


You need to report it to Facebook

From Josh Kirschner on September 29, 2021 :: 12:31 pm

We have another article that deals specifically with what to do when your Facebook account ha been hacked. Follow the advice there. You’ll need to report it to Facebook and will likely need to provide various documentation to prove you own the account.


Can they disabled account in fb clone app

From Yhiyftt on October 13, 2021 :: 10:09 am

Can they disabled account in fb clone app


Husband's acct hacked

From Lisa Ritter Donato on May 06, 2022 :: 8:46 pm

My husband’s acct was hacked he was able to get back in once and saw his email had been changed to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). both myself and husband reported it to facebook. Obviously if facebbok is sending msgs to the fb email they are sending it to the hackers outlook address. The hacker is continuing to msg friends asking for money passwords to help unlock their new phone etc. So annoying.


Read More Comments: 1 2

Love getting helpful tech tips? Subscribe to our free newsletter!

Home | About | Meet the Team | Contact Us
Media Kit | Newsletter Sponsorships
Accessibility Statement
Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookie Policy

Techlicious participates in affiliate programs, including the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, which provide a small commission from some, but not all, of the "click-thru to buy" links contained in our articles. These click-thru links are determined after the article has been written, based on price and product availability — the commissions do not impact our choice of recommended product, nor the price you pay. When you use these links, you help support our ongoing editorial mission to provide you with the best product recommendations.

© Techlicious LLC.