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Reasons For An Instagram Ban: Everything You Need to Know

Curious about the reasons for an Instagram ban? Then this article is for you.

In the present, getting temporarily banned on Instagram is very common. With the implementation of advanced AI and algorithms, Instagram is able to easily detect automation and spam.

For example, if you repeatedly follow a bunch of users, you’ll be temporarily blocked from following because you’ll be marked as spam.

The block can last for several hours or even days and that can be a hindrance to your growth.

This article states the list of reasons for an Instagram ban, how you can fix and prevent them from happening.

There are three types of Instagram bans. The permanent ban, action block and a shadowban.

Each of these bans serve their own purpose such as reducing inappropriate content, spam, and automation.

Read on to find out the details of each ban.

Permanent ban

The permanent ban is the worse out of all the bans. This is because you’ll no longer have access to your Instagram account.

If this happens, you’ll have to create a new Instagram account with a new username. The worse part is, you’ll have to start from scratch.

If you had thousands of followers and high engagement in the past, starting a new account means that you’ll have to put in the same amount of time and effort as your previous account to grow it.

This can be both frustrating and exhausting.

Fundamentally, the permanent ban occurs when you violate one or more of Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines.

Reasons for a permanent ban on Instagram

Here are all the known reasons you can get banned on Instagram.

These reasons are extracted and compiled from Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines.

1. Posting inappropriate content

The fastest way you can get banned on Instagram is by posting inappropriate content. This includes nudity, violence, self-harm, copyrighted content, etc.

If you have a large number of followers, it’s more likely for someone to report your content if they find it inappropriate.

Hence, if your post gets multiple reports, Instagram will warn you that your post have violated their guidelines and remove it.

If you continue to post inappropriate content, your account may be permanently suspended.

2. Buying fake followers

Instagram removing fake followers and likes

The second reason you can get banned on Instagram is from buying fake followers, likes or comments.

There are lots of people who got their account banned from buying followers.

This is because fake followers are very obvious ⁠— no one is able to get thousands of followers in a matter of hours.

Moreover, Instagram’s AI constantly detects fake accounts (used for sale) and deletes them.

If there’s an account getting thousands of followers in a short period of time, Instagram will know and they might ban you.

Buying fake followers also violates Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines.

From a blog post in 2018, Instagram announced that they will be deleting inauthentic activity from their platform (e.g. fake accounts).

So if your account is banned from buying fake followers, don’t be surprised.

3. Using automation

In the past, automation tools used to be very safe when utilized correctly. However, Instagram’s algorithm has changed and automation does not work anymore.

People who adjust the settings to the max (e.g. to follow hundreds of people a day, like thousands of photos) have a high chance of getting their account banned.

In addition, not using a proxy when automating can result in a ban. If you’re automating an individual account on minimal settings, you’re fine.

However, if you’re automating more than one account, you’ll need to utilize proxies so your accounts are automated from different IP addresses.

Otherwise, Instagram will be able to easily detect that you’re using automation and permanently ban your account.

Ultimately, it’s against Instagram’s policies to use automation.

4. Buying Instagram accounts

If you’re buying an Instagram account, your account might be banned.

This is because it’s against Instagram polices to buy or sell Instagram accounts.

Here’s an excerpt from one of their policies.

You are responsible for any activity that occurs through your account and you agree you will not sell, transfer, license, or assign your account, followers, username, or any account rights.

If Instagram is aware that you’re trying to sell or buy an account, your account may be banned.

However, it’s very rare for your account to get banned if you’re buying, selling or re-selling Instagram accounts.

That being said, it still violates Instagram’s policies so don’t be surprised if your account is banned from this.

5. Mass creation of accounts

If you’re creating tens or hundreds of accounts using a software, from your mobile phone, or desktop, Instagram might block all of these accounts.

This is because Instagram restricts the creation of multiple accounts from a single IP address at one go.

Here’s an excerpt from one of their guidelines.

You must not create accounts with the Service through unauthorized means, including but not limited to, by using an automated device, script, bot, spider, crawler, or scraper.

This means that if you mass create Instagram accounts using a software, these accounts may be banned.

6. Selling illegal products or services

The final way you can get banned on Instagram is by selling illegal products or services.

Here an excerpt from one of Instagram’s guidelines.

You may not use the service for any illegal or unauthorized purpose. You agree to comply with all laws, rules, and regulations (e.g. federal state, local, and provincial) applicable for your use of the service and your content (defined below), including but not limited to, copyright laws.

Hence, if you’re selling illegal products or services on Instagram, don’t be surprised if your account gets banned.

How to prevent getting permanently banned on Instagram

Now that you know the reasons for a ban on Instagram, here’s how to prevent it.

Follow these tips to prevent your account from being banned.

1. Don’t post inappropriate content

Don’t post inappropriate content including nudity, violence, self-harm, etc.

Only nudity in photos of paintings and sculptures are acceptable.

To prevent being banned, do not post inappropriate content mentioned in Instagram’s Community Guidelines.

2. Avoid buying fake followers

Avoid buying fake followers, likes or comments from websites or services.

Buying fake followers not only decreases your engagement rates, but your account may be permanently banned on Instagram as well.

Do note that there are many websites and services claiming that they sell ‘real followers’. But the truth is, all their followers are fake accounts that are created in bulk.

Instead of buying fake followers, you can either try to grow your Instagram organically or utilize other methods that do not violate Instagram’s guidelines.

3. Stop using automation

If you’re using automation, stop them at once.

Instagram’s AI is getting better at detecting and preventing automation and your account may be banned from using them.

Moreover, it’s also a waste of time and money purchasing automated software because Instagram’s algorithm will block it.

So, if you’re utilizing automation to grow your Instagram account, revoke its access by navigating to settings > authorized applications > revoke access.

This will sign you out from any unauthorized third-party applications or software.

4. Don’t buy Instagram accounts

Don’t buy, sell or re-sell Instagram accounts.

Buying Instagram accounts might result to the suspension of your account because it’s against Instagram’s rules and regulations.

Instead, keep your account to yourself.

It’s completely fine to be inactive on Instagram because your account will not be deleted as long as it does not violate Instagram’s Community Guidelines, Terms of Service, or infringes a trademark.

5. Prevent mass creating accounts

Do not mass create Instagram accounts to prevent being banned.

Creating mass Instagram accounts on the same IP address will get your accounts banned.

Instead, stick to a maximum of five accounts per device.

6. Don’t sell illegal products or services

Lastly, do not sell illegal products or services.

Selling illegal products or services is a quick way you can get banned on Instagram if you received multiple reports.

Instead, sell products or services that are completely legal.

Action block

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What exactly is the action block on Instagram?

The action block is a temporary block either preventing you from following, unfollowing, liking, commenting, direct messaging, or posting.

The block can last for a few hours, 24 hours, or more depending on different factors.

Reasons for the action block on Instagram

Here are all the known reasons for the action block on Instagram.

This section guides you on the exact causes of the action block so that you will not be surprised the next time it happens.

Here are all the Instagram ban reasons related to the action block.

1. You’re following too many users at one go

If you’re following users repetitively (e.g. 20 users in 20 seconds) your account will be action blocked.

This is because Instagram’s algorithm will mark your account for spam and block you from abusing the feature.

2. Repetitively sending direct messages

Your account will be action blocked if you send too many direct messages at one go.

However, if you’re replying a message to someone, you won’t get action blocked.

The action block occurs when you send the same direct message over and over again to different users in a short period of time.

3. You’re using automation

Automation allows you to carry out actions at a faster rate.

For example, you can follow, unfollow, like, comment, and direct message quicker than doing them manually.

Instagram’s algorithm is easily able to detect such activity and your account will be action blocked if you abuse it.

How to prevent the action block

Here’s what you can do to prevent the action block.

This is just a summarized version of the full guide on how to prevent the action block on Instagram.

1. Don’t follow too many users at one go

Don’t follow too many users at one go.

Instead, follow users in an interval to prevent being action blocked.

A good following interval is following one user per minute.

2. Stop repetitively sending direct messages

Stop sending consecutive direct messages to others.

Instead, send direct messages in an interval of 5 to 10 minutes.

In addition, make sure to use different variations of a direct message to prove that you are human.

3. Stop using automation

Stop using any form of automation.

Instead, carry out actions manually (e.g. liking, commenting) like a real human.

Also, revoke access to any third party applications by navigating to settings > authorized applications > revoke access.


If you’ve been on Instagram for a while, you probably heard of the term called ‘shadowban’. So what exactly is the shadowban?

In a nutshell, the shadowban ‘hides’ your new posts from new users (users that are not following you). This will drastically decrease the reach of your posts.

Fortunately, the shadowban can be easily prevented with some changes. However, it won’t be instantly removed.

The shadowban normally lasts up for a maximum of one to two weeks.

This is a summary from the full shadowban guide for Instagram.

Reasons for the shadowban on Instagram

The shadowban is very frustrating because it hinders your growth.

There are multiple reasons for the shadowban on Instagram.

This section tells you exactly why you’re shadowbanned on Instagram.

Here are the reasons for an Instagram (shadow) ban.

1. You used a banned hashtag

Instagram banned hashtag

If you utilized a banned hashtag on one of your post’s caption or comment section, your account may be shadowbanned.

To check whether you’ve used a banned hashtag, search it up on Instagram.

If the bottom of the hashtag states that its recent posts are hidden, then the hashtag is banned.

2. Too many hashtags

Secondly, if you used too many hashtags on your post, your account may be shadowbanned.

One of the root causes of a shadowban is using too many hashtags.

Using too many hashtags is a sign of spam.

It’s also a common reason for an Instagram ban.

3. One of your posts has violated Instagram’s guidelines

If one of your posts has recently violated Instagram’s community guidelines, your account may be shadowbanned.

This is because Instagram does not want to show inappropriate content to others.

This means that your post will be hidden from both the hashtag page and the explore page.

In addition, when someone searches for your username, it may appear at the bottom of the search results instead of the top.

How to prevent the shadowban on Instagram

Here’s how to prevent the shadowban on Instagram.

Follow these actionable steps to prevent getting shadowbanned on Instagram again.

1. Check for banned hashtags

Before adding a bunch of hashtags in the caption or the comment section of your post, make sure to check whether it’s banned or not.

As mentioned in the above section, do a quick search for the hashtag on Instagram.

If the hashtag is banned, its posts will be hidden from the feed.

2. Stop using too many hashtags

Stop adding too many hashtags in the caption or the comment section of your post.

The maximum number of hashtags you can use is 30.

Don’t use more than 30 hashtags on your posts or you might be shadowbanned.

Instead, use a maximum of 30 relevant hashtags.

Additionally, you should not use the same chunk of hashtags for every post.

Utilize different hashtags each time you post something.

3. Don’t post inappropriate content

Don’t post inappropriate content on your Instagram.

That includes posts, videos, and stories.

If you have a large number of followers, your posts have a higher chance of being reported (if they are inappropriate).

Hence, your account may be shadowbanned if one of your posts gets taken down for violating Instagram’s guidelines.


There are several Instagram ban reasons.

If you’re banned on Instagram; be it a permanent ban, an action block, or a shadowban, follow the steps listed in this article to prevent them from ever happening again in the future.

Ultimately, if you’re following Instagram’s Terms of Use and Community Guidelines, your account will be safe from being banned.

P.S. If you liked this article, feel free to join our follow for follow community for Instagram: https://www.followchain.org — it’s free!

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Author: Lim How Wei. Lim How Wei is the founder of Followchain, a community that simplifies growth and networking for Instagram users. Feel free to follow him on Instagram.

About the author

Lim How Wei

Lim How Wei is the founder of followchain.org, with 8+ years of experience in Social Media Marketing and 4+ years of experience as an active investor in stocks and cryptocurrencies. He has researched, tested, and written thousands of articles ranging from social media platforms to messaging apps.

Lim has been quoted and referenced by major publications and media companies like WikiHow, Fast Company, HuffPost, Vice, New York Post, The Conversation, and many others. One of his articles about the gig economy was quoted by Joe Rogan who hosts The Joe Rogan Experience (arguably the most popular podcast in the world), in the This Past Weekend podcast by Theo Von.

In his free time, Lim plays multiple games like Genshin Impact, League of Legends, Counter-Strike, Hearthstone, RuneScape, and many others. He creates guides, walkthroughs, solutions, and more on games that he plays to help other players with their progression.