Q: I just got a notification that Facebook “trusted contacts” will disappear, so what should I do if anything about it?
A: Facebook introduced this very important security feature in 2013 and it’s the one I’ve highlighted that every user has configured since its launch.
This can be critical when you forget your password, no longer have access to the original email account associated with your profile, or find yourself locked out of the account.
It lets you designate 3-5 friends as “Trusted Contacts” in case you need help regaining access to your account by sending them a special code that will unlock your profile.
Facebook didn’t give a reason why it’s closing it, just the following notification that started popping up recently:
“Trusted Contacts will soon be gone. This means that your chosen friends will no longer be able to help you get back on Facebook if you lose access to your account.
Check email and phone settings
The only way for Facebook to associate an individual with a profile is through the email address and phone number used when creating the account.
A common situation for those who have had an account for a very long time is that the email address they used during creation is no longer available. This can be a huge hurdle if you ever get stuck, so make sure your current email address is associated with your profile.
Steps to add or remove an email address from your profile are posted at: https://bit.ly/3wPRMBg
While you check your email settings, do the same with your phone number as it also plays an important role in keeping your account secure.
This very important security feature is linked to the registered phone number on Facebook and prevents someone from accessing your account if they steal your password.
When enabled, Facebook will send a code to your registered phone number when it does not recognize the device or browser used to access your account.
Unless the cyber thief stole both your password and your unlocked smartphone, this will keep them out and serve as a warning system that someone has your password.
Instructions for setting up two-factor authentication are posted at: https://bit.ly/3GusBHO
Not to be confused with Trusted Contacts, a Legacy Contact is someone designated to manage your profile in the event of your death.
Facebook has the ability to convert a profile to a memorial account so that it is maintained and managed by the legacy contact.
This does not mean that they can log into the account and use it as they wish, it allows them to do the following:
- Write a pinned post for the memorial profile (for example: to share a final message on behalf of your deceased loved one or provide information about a memorial service)
- Respond to new friend requests (e.g. old friends or family members who weren’t on Facebook yet)
- Update profile photo and cover photo
No specific date has been released for the end of Trusted Contacts, so take a minute to review all of these settings soon.