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How to Delete an Old Facebook Account When You Can't Log In

by on July 17, 2018
in Tips & How-Tos, Facebook, Privacy :: 436 comments

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Do you have an old Facebook account that you’re no longer using with posts or pictures from your younger days that you don’t want people to see? It’s easy to delete your account if you still have access to it. But what if you can’t remember the login information?

Here are the two steps you can take to try and recover account access so you can delete your account – and the associated unwanted former memories – permanently.

1. Try to recover your Facebook password

Go to to search for your account. You can search by the email or phone number you used to set up the account, or just by name (the search screen doesn’t mention that option but it works, too).

If you go the name route, your account may or may not show up, depending on your privacy settings. If you don’t see it, click “I’m not on this list” and you’ll be prompted to enter the name of a friend and search again.

Once you find your old account, you’ll be able to send a reset code to any of the email addresses or phone numbers you associated with your account. If you’re not sure which email address you used, Facebook will show you a redacted version (e.g., j******* that should spark your memory in case it’s an old email that you don’t log into anymore.

If you don’t have access to that email address or phone number anymore, try hard to regain access to that old email account. Because it gets far bleaker from here…

2. Use Facebook’s Trusted Friends feature

If you can’t access the email address or phone number on your account, your only other hope is Facebook’s Trusted Friends feature. Launched in 2013, Trusted Friends lets you regain access to your account in case of forgotten credentials by asking three “trusted friends” to supply a reset code. The big problem with Trusted Friends is that you had to have set it up in advance for your account, which very few people have done, according to a quick check I did of my friends and other random accounts.

(To set it up for an account you still have access to: 1. Go to Settings (down arrow). 2. Go to your Security and Login Settings. 3. Scroll down to Choose 3 to 5 friends to contact if you get locked out and click Edit. 43. Click Choose friends and follow the on-screen instructions.)

Facebook lockout contacts

If you fall into the category of one of the lucky few who set this up, when you tell Facebook that you “No longer have access to these?” on the email and phone recovery page you’ll be provided with an option to enter a new email or phone number and continue with the process.

Click “Reveal My Trusted Contacts” and type the full name of one of your trusted contacts. Facebook will then give you a special URL that each of your three friends need to access. The URL contains a recovery code to reset your account, which your friends need to provide back to you. You will need to contact your friends and provide them the URL – Facebook will not do this for you. If you can’t contact one of your trusted friends for whatever reason, you’re out of luck.

As I mentioned above, if you didn’t already set up Trusted Contacts, it’s too late now. When you tell Facebook you can’t access the email account, you won’t have the option to provide a new email address or phone number, you’ll just be told to try logging in again (in other words, you’re outta luck).

3. Report your old account as fake

While Facebook makes deleting an old account difficult, thanks to the proliferation of Facebook account spoofing, deleting a fake account is far easier. So one of our clever readers told us in the comments he reported his old account as fake and it was quickly deleted. Another reader also had success going this route.

To report your old account as fake:

  1. Go to the profile of your old account
  2. Click the three little dots on the bottom right of the cover photo and select "Give feedback or report this profile"
  3. Click on "Pretending to Be Someone" and then click "Me"

Let us know in the comments if this method works for you, too.

4. There is no option four (at least no easy one)

I reached out to Facebook and they have confirmed that, for security reasons, they will only allow you to delete your account if you can access it through one of the two official methods above (or our "unofficial" workaround). Those photos of your ex-relationships, nights of drunken bacchanalia and really, really bad choices of hairstyle are going to live on forever in the Facebook universe.

However, you may be able to pursue avenues outside Facebook’s standard deletion policies. For example, if you reside in the EU, the GDPR provides the right for consumers to demand companies delete their personal information on request. And if Facebook isn’t responding to a request, you may be able to take the issue up with your country’s privacy officer.

According to Facebook’s Privacy Policy, disputes can be resolved through a third-party company called TrustArc. However, at the time of publishing this article, Facebook is blocking its own link to the TrustArc feedback form as malicious (irony noted). Instead, you can use Facebook’s Data Policy Help Center Contact form or send a snail mail letter to:

Facebook, Inc.
ATTN: Privacy Operations
1601 Willow Road
Menlo Park, CA 94025

Since these aren't officially sanctioned means of getting your account deleted, we don't know what your likelihood of success will be. If you go this route, let us know how you fare in the comments below.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Please do not put requests to have your Facebook account deleted in the comments. We cannot delete your account  you must follow the steps with Facebook we outlined above.


[Image credit: Facebook login via BigStockPhoto]

Discussion loading

Delete my facebook accounts

From Ruby Ward on August 21, 2022 :: 1:54 am

Hi i want to delete my old facebook accounts theres too many like about 4 and i need delete them all


delete my old account

From Harry Jay Dy on August 25, 2022 :: 5:55 pm

Can someone please delete my account this is so embrassing and I got depressed, I can’t access this account for long time ago, I lost my old sim card and this account is no email. Please help me to delete this lots of people judging me because of the old profile that I have to this account. I alreayd report this but they down the fb I don’t know why. Here is the link of my old FB please delete it im begging.


Tried to Setup and Account Got Banned before I got Started

From Everett Williams on August 29, 2022 :: 10:04 am

Obviously this is already more trouble than it worth.  I did have an account and asked for it to be deleted as it though there was too much info shared. Recently I tried to give it another try but for some reason I was banned before I got started.  I may have been my fault because I had setup a yahoo account and after either during or after setting up the account I forgot to put the last part of my email in. So I corrected that and I did the upload photo thing and a couple of days later I was able to login so I did a friend request to my sister and I was immediately banned again.  So anyway I’m done you can just ban me forever at this point so I will waste no more time here…  PLEASE DELETE ALL MY INFORMATION PERSONAL AND OTHERWISE…. I promise to never do this again.  Thank You   PS…. I can’t log in with facebook without uploading another picture?


I may have also accidently tried to use someone else's account

From Everett Williams on August 29, 2022 :: 10:13 am

I did also say i may have unwittingly used someone else’s email by mistake.  If you just remove the numbers from this email you will see the other persons address.  I did fix it on my account but could someone please make sure I did not mess up someone else’s account. 

Thank You


Okay, My first post above is so obscure that I can't read it.

From Everett Williams on August 29, 2022 :: 10:57 am

Banned from Facebook before I got started then banned again? 
I had another Facebook account a few years back with a different email address.  I requested that Facebook be deleted it was done.  That could be why I am banned now? 
This is 2 or 3 years later and I am trying to setup a new Facebook account with a new email address but I keep getting banned.
The problem may be my fault since I accidently used my email without the numbers while setting it up. I did fix the email issue immediately and it was okay at first but I was banned again almost immediately.  I thought that it was because of the email mistake so I uploaded a photo as requested and I was able to logon a day or so later. I logged in again today and I thought it was working so I did a friend request to my sister then I got the same message that I needed to upload a photo etc.. .  At this point it is just beyond my patience to continue trying to make it work. Therefore, could you please delete all my information and delete my newly created Facebook account. 

Thank You….


Deleting old account that I can't log into

From Michael Crutchfield on September 21, 2022 :: 1:25 pm

I went to report fake account on several old accounts that I had set up over the years and reported fake account and selected ME but I can still pull them up on my mommas phone ,does it take time to delete old accounts this way? Please help me


Yes, it may take time

From Josh Kirschner on September 23, 2022 :: 10:43 am

Yes, Facebook sometimes takes a while to act. And, sometimes, they don’t act at all. Despite reporting many clearly fake/spam, even outright scam accounts, I frequently get a message back from Facebook saying the account doesn’t violate their rules. You just have to report it and hope they will act.


My facebook id was hacked.

From Help. on December 26, 2022 :: 8:41 am

My facebook id was hacked. i tried to recover and reset the passcode but due to code generator and two factor authentication i can’t login my old facebook id.


From Liz lagare ybanez on January 02, 2023 :: 12:07 am

My old face book long time i not use how can help no see all people in social medja how to remove can help this one


No help for many

From Tamela Lamie on January 15, 2023 :: 7:48 am

I have almost begged for anyone to help me to delete my old FB accounts and I’ve been on alot of help pages and I was just hoping that you were the one that was going to help me but no you didn’t and I was reading all the other people begging for help also and you hadn’t helped them either wow thanks for nothing


Read the article

From Josh Kirschner on January 18, 2023 :: 1:28 pm

The article provides instructions for how you can delete your account - we are not able to delete your Facebook account for you. I believe I make that VERY clear in the editor’s note:

“Please do not put requests to have your Facebook account deleted in the comments. We cannot delete your account – you must follow the steps with Facebook we outlined above.”

If you follow the directions and they don’t work, please let me know. If you don’t follow the directions and just post requests in the comments for us to do it (despite my explicit advice not to do that), it should not be a surprise that nothing changes.


Help me !

From Jessica R Menzies on January 20, 2023 :: 7:57 pm

I need get close account old Facebook but I can’t get in login everything nothing all ...


My account was hacked, so

From Carolyn Britain on January 24, 2023 :: 11:55 am

My account was hacked, so I locked it. I cannot access it in order to delete it. I have a 2nd account I now use, The problem is, when I get an email from Facebook about a new post and I click “view on Facebook”, the link takes me to the log in page of the locked account. How can I get these links to take me to the Facebook account that I currently use? OR how can I delete a locked account that I have not access to? Even the profile picture is changed to a stranger. I don’t really care if the locked account is deleted or not, I just want the links to take me to my new account so I can view new posts.


The Reporting The Account As Fake (Me)

From Juan Jose on January 25, 2023 :: 3:50 pm

Doesn’t Work I tried reporting my old accounts as pretending to be me and it said it didn’t go against community guidelines.. and I have people still tagging me in things on them and there spams..


I forgot my password and

From SARAH on January 28, 2023 :: 6:47 pm

I forgot my password and I’m no longer using my old number phone…So can you please help me to delete my old Facebook account


Recover old fb id

From Saakshi Tamang on February 11, 2023 :: 4:43 pm

I want to delete my old fb id but I can’t remember my pw and number is lost also can’t remember Gmail. It’s been many years. Do you guys have any idea how to get id back without any number. I know this is impossible to get id back without number but my hope is still there if you guys know then please tell me .


Shut down account

From Mrs Debbie Ann Allen on February 15, 2023 :: 4:05 pm

I no logger use my account but don’t have Facebook. Old friends have contacted me and my account is being used
I no longer have the email account



From Irvin Mease on February 20, 2023 :: 11:37 am

Hello my facebook account was taken, and I would like to have it deleted mainly because of my family pictures that are on the account. The thief changed the name from Irvin mease to Harley austin, along with the email address and password so I can’t recover it.



From Hadibuxmari on February 21, 2023 :: 12:07 am

We’ll take you through some steps to unlock your account.


Account delete

From Ghordrick Kevin kuande on February 22, 2023 :: 9:57 am

I want to delete my old Facebook account but I’ve forgotten my password, please help me…


delete an ex workers facebook account

From shane ward on February 23, 2023 :: 9:56 am

hello we have an ex worker who set up a facebook account using her work email reather than her private email . we need tro get it deleted but dont know how to go about this . i keep getting facebook notifications everytime somepnhe posts something to her


Delete fb account

From Jessica on February 26, 2023 :: 8:13 pm

I forgot my password and the code verifications are not being sent to my phone. I can’t delete my account. There are people who are bullying me and I don’t feel safe. Please delete my Account.


We are DOOMED!!

From JT on March 11, 2023 :: 9:49 am

We or whatever Country most of these replies are coming from are DOOMED!!

Read the article people.


Want to delete all my old facebook accounts

From Michael Rudi Weitsz on March 14, 2023 :: 10:19 am


I want to delete my

From Amsg on March 16, 2023 :: 5:13 pm

I want to delete my old Facebook account 😪


No powered no phone number

From Irulapathi irulapathi on March 25, 2023 :: 3:24 am

Please recovery my facebook id


Help to delete old account

From Andrew amoroso on April 05, 2023 :: 11:54 pm

Hi there this is andrew amoroso i would like to permanent delete my old account i creat this account when i younger and no more access of it on this account please help me for this situation to delete it


From Justin Panzarella on April 07, 2023 :: 9:49 am

I have two old accounts, my first one I ever made that I lost access to because my first phone was lost during a move from houses, then my second account I made because of my lost first one but sadly lost access to this one to during a fishing trip the phone got soaked and I couldn’t get access to it so now I’m on my third and hopefully final account.  So I just reported my two old accounts and I’m hoping to soon look and find that they are both gone.
Thank you for the help and please do wish me luck.
Thank you !


How To Disabled My Account ?

From Ali Jee on May 10, 2023 :: 3:49 am

Please Guide me ,  how to unable Facebook account. without login . i’m so sad please help me.


From AG BG on May 15, 2023 :: 6:04 pm

Hello, could you delete my old account Anna Genova please. I tried to login, but I do not remember My password and user name. Thank you.


Can you delete my old account

From AG BG on May 15, 2023 :: 6:19 pm

Could you delete my Old and Fake Facebook account please (somebody created without my permission). Both accounts are under Anna Genova. I already reported them to Facebook but they still there.
Thank you


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