Instagram starts purge of fake likes, follows and comments

Alfred Osborne
November 20, 2018

Instagram launched a new crackdown on users who inflate their follower counts and engagement metrics using unauthorized third-party apps.

The Facebook-owned social media platform said Monday that it will immediately start purging fake likes, follows and comments from accounts that use third-party applications to draw attention online.

Instagram is now taking action against such abuse by removing all inauthentic likes, follows and comments from accounts employing third-party apps used to boost the account's popularity.

Instagram, not surprisingly, wants its service to be about human connections, not bots pelting members with spam interactions. The site states it's their "responsibility to ensure these experiences aren't disrupted by inauthentic activity".

According to Instagram, the company has built machine-learning tools to help identify accounts that have generated bogus followers and activity.

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Starting today, Instagram will begin removing fake likes, follows, and comments from profiles across its service.

"It looks like you may have shared your username and password with an app offering followers or likes", the notice continues.

The move here was much-needed from the company.

In the past, Instagram has removed fake accounts, but this will be the first time the social network has actively made an effort to combat fake activity.

Instagram is borrowing a page from Twitter's playbook and will now be more proactive with regard to limiting what it calls inauthentic activity. Additionally, the company will also inform the users with an in-app message that will ask them to change their account's password as these services usually require users to provide their actual credentials.

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