Impersonation and Scamming Alerts Introduced on Instagram

27 Mar 2024 UK SIC

In a recent update, Instagram has rolled out a new feature aimed at enhancing user awareness regarding potential suspicious activities and impersonation attempts that may be circulating online. With scammers continuously devising new, sophisticated ways to extract personal information and financial data, this latest addition seeks to support users to safeguard their accounts.

Suspicious Behaviour

Instagram will now provide users with notifications and alerts when they detect an account engaging in potential scams or suspicious behaviours. These notifications include:

  • Issuing a security alert when an account attempting to follow you is flagged for potential impersonation or scamming.
  • Sending a security alert when Instagram suspects that a certain account might be deceptive and sends you a direct message.
  • Notifying users when a link appears dubious, displaying a pop-up message advising caution and suggesting review.

While these notifications do not prevent users from interacting with potentially suspicious accounts, they serve to promote critical thinking and provide users with additional time to assess the content. Instagram also encourages users to take advantage of the Security Check Up feature, which offers support for creating strong passwords, enabling two-factor authentication, and setting up recovery information.

Responding to a Suspected Phishing Attempt

If you suspect you have fallen victim to a phishing attempt, here are some steps to consider:

  • Contact your bank immediately if you suspect your banking details have been compromised.
  • Change all of your account passwords, even if you believe they have not been compromised.
  • Document the incident by making notes of what transpired or capturing screenshots of messages and websites.
  • Report the incident to law enforcement or the appropriate authorities, such as Action Fraud.
  • Notify the social media platform about the incident. For guidance on reporting to various platforms, you can visit Report Harmful Content.

For those seeking further insights into cybersecurity and best practices, the SWGfL security page offers a wealth of information, including downloadable resources and free guidance covering various scenarios.

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