How do you stop a hacker on Instagram?
Hackers are getting smarter and smarter each day.
This means you need to be smarter about detecting and preventing them as well.
This posts guides you on how to detect, stop and prevent a hacker from accessing your Instagram account.
By the end of the article, you should be able to stop a hacker on Instagram easily.
Table of Contents
- Types of scams
- Method of contact
- How to detect a fake website
- How to stop a hacker on Instagram
Types of scams
In order for you to stop a hacker, you’ll need to be aware of the different types of scams.
Here is a short list of common Instagram scams that you have to be wary of.
The first type of scam are fake websites.
These hackers/scammers create fake websites that look exactly like the Instagram website.
Their goal is to make you key in your login details on their website which will then be sent over to them.
This means that once you keyed in your login details (username, password), the website owner now has your login info.
This is also known as phishing.
If you fall victim to these scams, there isn’t much you can do because the hacker now has your username and password.
However, if you’re still able to log in to your Instagram account, make sure to change your password immediately.
This is the first type of scam you’ll want to avoid.
Fake software and services
Next, you’ll want to avoid software and services that help you to grow your Instagram followers that require your Instagram username and password.
Most of these software and services are not legitimate, provide fake followers and they might steal your login information.
There are hundreds of growth services out there on the internet like Fiverr.
Services on Fiverr usually require you to provide your Instagram username and password which is not safe.
Some of these services might automate your account and inject fake followers which will negatively affect your engagement rate.
Others might steal your login info and change your password.
At the end of the day, you shouldn’t share your Instagram password to anyone you do not trust.
However, if you ever decide to use these growth services, make sure to check their background and reviews first.
Additionally, make sure to change your Instagram password after the service has been completed.
Mobile number and OTP scam
If you have received a direct message from someone claiming that they have lost your hand-phone number and one-time password (OTP), do not give it to them.
These scammers create fake accounts of your friends on Instagram and pretend as though they have lost your number and then request for an OTP.
These OTP can be used for illicit purchases that will be charged to your mobile phone’s bills.
As a rule, you should never reveal your OTP to someone you do not trust.
There are three ways you can check whether the person is actually your friend.
The first way is to ask your friend whether the account belongs to them through a text message.
Secondly, you can send a direct message to your friend’s main account on Instagram to double-check the identity of the other account.
Lastly, you can ask the other account to send you a direct message using their main Instagram account to prove their identity.
Method of contact
Basically, these hackers/scammers will contact you through your email (if you added it on your profile) or by direct messaging.
Then, they’ll send you something along the lines of, “Hi, we detected some suspicious activity that suggests your Instagram account may be compromised. Don’t worry, we’ve taken measures to secure your account. As such, we need you to log in and confirm your account: (fake link)”.
Once you click on the link, you’ll be directed to a duplicate Instagram website.
Another common way of contact is that you’ll get a fake email from someone pretending to be part of the Instagram team.
The email will claim that you have been offered the verification badge and the final step you’ll have to do is to complete a form.
Instagram will never send out these emails if did not request for verification.
An easy way to determine whether it is a scam or not is to check the email address of the sender.
Simply hover over or click the name of the sender to check their email address.
If the email is something like, “firstname.lastname@example.org” then it’s a fake email address.
A real Instagram email address would end with “instagram.com”.
How to detect a fake website
To detect whether a website is fake, simply check for an SSL certificate.
An SSL certificate is basically a ‘lock’ symbol beside a website’s address.
It enables security over sensitive data.
If the website does not have an SSL certificate, avoid giving any sensitive information such as your credit card or login details.
How to stop a hacker on Instagram
To stop a hacker on Instagram, you need to pick a strong password, revoke access to third-party apps/services, and avoid clicking on fraudulent links.
It’s also important to prevent unwanted tagging, enable two-factor authentication, keep your information private, and get recovery codes.
Because if you do get hacked, Instagram support is not going to help you.
They’ll either send you an automated response or not get back to you at all.
This is because they get flooded with too much mail and messages daily.
So, their customer support is basically redundant.
Pick a strong password
A strong password prevents a brute-force attack.
Simply, a brute-force attack is the act of guessing your password as many times as possible.
Most people might think that a brute-force attack rarely ever works.
However, brute-force attacks are accountable for over 100 million data breaches per year.
Check whether your password is in the list of the most common passwords.
If you have a password like ‘123456’ or ‘qwerty’ it’s time to change your password because hackers can easily guess it.
A strong password is one that comprises a mix of letters, numbers, puncutation, uppercase and lower-case characters.
Additionally, try changing your password every 90 days and don’t use the same password for every account.
Revoke access to third-party apps/services
Do this if you’ve signed up for a growth service in the past.
This is to ensure that third-party apps/services do not have your login info.
To revoke access to third-party apps/services, navigate to your Instagram profile on the desktop app, click on settings, Apps and Websites then click on remove.
Do not click on fraudulent links
Never click on any unsolicited link.
With reference to the first few sections, you’ll need to do a background check before clicking on any link.
Is the person’s email address/account legitimate?
You must be extra wary of links that are sent from people that you do not know.
Additionally, some people might pretend to be someone you know.
Always do a thorough check on the person before clicking on the link they’ve sent you.
Prevent unwanted tagging
Getting tagged on Instagram might be an instance of spam so you might want to stop people from doing so.
For that to happen, you’ll need to manually approve tags.
Navigate to your profile, tap on the hamburger menu on the top-right hand corner of your screen, tap on settings, then privacy and under the interactions section, tap on tags, then flip the “Manually approve tags” switch to on.
Now, you can manually approve tags whenever someone tags you on their posts.
Additionally, you can also completely disable others from tagging you by setting “Allow tags from” to “No One”.
This will prevent unwanted spam.
Enable two-factor authentication on Instagram
Enabling two-factor authentication on Instagram is highly recommended because whenever you try to login to your Instagram account on a new device, they will request a code from you.
This makes it harder for someone to log in to your account using a different device.
For example, if one of your friends know your password and decided to log in to your account on their device, they wouldn’t be able to.
This is because they need a second authentication, which is the code that will be sent to you via text, email or a two-factor authentication app.
If you have two-factor authentication enabled, it’s near impossible for someone to access your account from a different device.
Here’s how you can enable two-factor authentication on Instagram.
Navigate to the hamburger menu on the top-right hand corner of your profile, go to settings, navigate to security and under ‘Login security’, there’s a ‘Two-factor authentication” tab.
Keep your information private
To make sure that your account stays safe, do not share confidential information in your photos, or captions.
Be very careful about the information you share on Instagram.
You don’t want a stalker to know your exact location.
Don’t share other people’s information as well.
Whenever you log in to your Instagram account using a public device (local and overseas), be sure to log out of the account after you’ve finished using it.
Otherwise, people will be able to access your account without your consent.
Finally, you can get recovery codes.
These are one-time codes you can use to get back in your Instagram account in case you lose your current device.
You can get these codes under the “Two-factor authentication” tab as well.
You only get 5 of these codes so make sure you keep these codes somewhere safe.
In conclusion, how does one stop a hacker on Instagram?
To stop a hacker on Instagram, you’ll need to be vigilant.
Never share your Instagram password with others.
Whenever you receive an email or a direct message that has a link, make sure to double-check the source of the email or user.
Check whether the email is official and ends with instagram.com. If it doesn’t, the email is a fraud.
Trust your gut if you think that an email or message you received is a scam because most of the time, you’ll be right.
Prevention is also super important.
You don’t want to wait until your Instagram account gets hacked to find a solution. If you’re at this stage, it’s too late.
Make sure you have a strong password to prevent hackers from guessing it.
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