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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Instagram is finally cracking down on fake followers and likes

The social media site has announced it will be using new technology to eliminate 'inauthentic activity'

Paying for followers is a trick used by thousands to up their numbers and interactions, but may soon be a thing of the past. Courtesy Instagram
Paying for followers is a trick used by thousands to up their numbers and interactions, but may soon be a thing of the past. Courtesy Instagram

Instagram has announced that it is about to crack down on fake followers. The picture sharing app will be taking action against services selling followers, likes and comments, it revealed in a blog post.

Paying for followers is a trick used by thousands using the app to up their numbers and interactions, but it may soon be a thing of the past thanks to new technology being rolled out by the social media site.

Artificial intelligence tools will be able to spot "inauthentic activity", Instagram says, sending any accounts using these third-party tools an in-app warning. Follower boosting accounts were charging users anywhere between $10 (Dh36) and $45 (Dh165) a month for the service, although many have shut down since the announcement.

What will it mean?

Instagram will start to scrub these fakes likes, followers and comments from any account found to be using them.

Users will also be told to change their passwords, as they are often shared with the third party apps in order to carry out the service.

Third party websites found to be carrying out this service could also find their Instagram access limited in the future.

What has Instagram said?

Sharing a blog post on Monday, Instagram says it has taken the step to ensure the social media site remains a vibrant, authentic community. “Recently, we’ve seen accounts use third-party apps to artificially grow their audience,” the post says. “Every day people come to Instagram to have real experiences, including genuine interactions. It is our responsibility to ensure these experiences aren’t disrupted by inauthentic activity. Starting today, we will begin removing inauthentic likes, follows and comments from accounts that use third-party apps to boost their popularity.”

Instagram adds it will have more updates on the crackdown in the coming weeks.

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