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Meta deletes small business pages due to pre-holiday hacking

Due to a sophisticated pre-holiday attack on small businesses on Meta platforms, some owners are left in the dark.

Woman confused at computer representing small business owner's being hacked at Meta.

Business owners and side hustlers across the globe rely on social media platforms to generate revenue for themselves and their families. With our world revolving around technology and the internet, old-fashioned ways of making money just aren’t cutting it anymore – or are at least a lot less effective than they used to be. Facebook and Instagram are two of the most popular platforms that help give people the steam they need to take off, but unfortunately, these sites have drawbacks that have the ability to break small businesses entirely. Sellers everywhere are sharing their Meta horror stories, like Sheela Lalani, who rolled out her holiday collection right before Meta deleted all of her social media accounts for her business.

Her personal and business Facebook pages were completely wiped along with her Instagram boutique.

This sudden and unexplained move left Sheela worried about the future of her business. Why did this happen?

Someone bought Instagram or Facebook ads with her PayPal account info, resulting in a $900 charge that she’s still waiting to receive a refund for. Situations like this highlight a serious and important issue – Meta doesn’t seem to care about small businesses.

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With the small biz boom still in full effect, more people than ever are turning to social media to advertise their brands and sell their merchandise. With the influx of business owners and hustles, more people are opening up about their negative experiences.

What happened to Lalani isn’t uncommon, and that’s a scary reality that some business owners face. Once an account is disabled permanently, these people are put in a sticky situation. Facebook has a reputation for not budging one bit when they’ve finalized decisions. Oftentimes, customer service or support complaints and appeals go unread or marked as solved without anyone looking into the issue further to see if mistakes were made, leaving users in the dark.

Emotional distress, lack of refunds, income loss, and a diminishing reputation are the last thing on Meta’s mind, based on reports and developments all across the board. Will they wake up anytime soon?

Macie LaCau is a passionate writer, herbal educator, and dog enthusiast. She spends most of her time overthinking and watering her tiny tomatoes.

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