It’s no secret that “fake following” tactics in social media sites like Instagram are easily available. You can buy hundreds of inactive, active and “real” active Instagram followers all for under $100 or 1,000 Instagram “likes” for $25. It may seem enticing to simply buy “likes” and “followers” rather than letting it naturally grow over time, but the reality is, it might actually hurt your instagram account in the long run.
You should know that it is not only buying instant “likes” and “followers” that can cripple your Instagram account. According to a Reuters report, a virus, traditionally used for stealing credit card data – known as Zeus – is now being used to increase the online presence of Instagram accounts. The Instagram “likes” and “followers” that the virus generates are beneficial to marketers because they help them create buzz around certain hashtags. This virus will make a certain photo appear in Instagram’s Popular page. It might boost the count of the people following your account, but keep in mind that this will also create a chance of having your account banned by Instagram.
If the virus – Zeus – affect your account, the comment threads will not be formed which is needed to create a network. The account will be on Instagram’s popular page because of the many “likes” and “followers”. If this happens those real followers of your account will think that you use spamming methods to get a boost in your account’s presence. This is because you might have thousands of likes but your account will be completely littered with spam comments. Thus, if real followers notice that your account is spammed, then they will immediately stop following you. This will create a bad image which might cause your followers to completely leave your account.
Instagram’s Community Evangelist Jessica Zollman said in a thread on Quora – “We have a team that works really hard to identify spam through community flags, and we stop it as soon as it starts.” This specifically means that Instagram is paying attention to this matter. An Instagram spokesperson also said that they are also working hard to limit spam on their service and prohibit the creation of accounts through unauthorized or automated means.
Instagram authority also added that they have employed robust systems to address accounts compromised through malware and phishing which helps keep the number of fake accounts low.
In the meantime, you can backup your Instagram followers and photos before you get affected by this virus. Hackers have been known to access Instagram accounts and lock out users, delete all the photos and followers. Other than having a backup file of your account, you can also use free services in the net which can help you determine and remove unwanted followers who have not been engaged with you in recent times. On top of that, the help of experts in Web design for mobile devices is also just a Google search away to help you in making your Instagram account more protected from unscrupulous hackers.