We’ve been sent a copy of an Instagram phishing direct message that claims a copyright violation has been detected on your account. Here’s what to look out for.
A believable message pretending to be from Instagram’s help centre threatens to close your account if you don’t hand over personal information.
But the message is a phishing scam that you should delete and ignore.
The direct message, sent to private inboxes on the photo sharing app, warns that one of your posts has infringed copyright law.
It threatens that as a result, your account will be closed within 24 hours if you don’t dispute the ‘breach’ by following a link. Here’s what it looks like:
Why it’s so convincing
We’ve heard from a few people who thought the message was genuine, and we can see why. First, the fraudulent account uses the official Instagram company logo.
The tone and layout of the message make it sound formal and serious.
The message is also signed off with the real address of Instagram’s Californian HQ, which gives a false impression of authenticity.
How you can tell it’s fake
The account name ‘Instagramsupportcf’ rings alarm bells. In fact, Instagram contacts its users about account information or account issues over email, not through private message on the platform.
As with many similar scams we’ve seen, the message is also written in a strange way and contains a number of grammatical errors.
You can take a look at our guide to spotting scams to find out more giveaways that a message you’ve received might not be what it seems.
Instagram told us that it’s investigating the account behind the scam messages and intends to tackle the problem.
Have you received this message? Have you been sent any other scams to your Instagram account? We’d like to hear about your experiences in the comments.