An Instagram hack came to light after some celebrities’ accounts hacked last week. It’s not just the celebrities who had their social media account compromised, the hack has made its way through millions of accounts. Reports suggest that around six million Instagram accounts hacked due to a bug in the API. Read on to know how to protect yourself from being a victim of hackers.
Security Alert: Six Million Instagram Accounts Hacked
UK Security researchers stated that hackers have created a dark web database of users’ confidential information, disclosing private phone numbers as well as email addresses. Apart from leaking the details of thousands of A-listers, hijackers created an online database where cyber-terrorists could access private user details for $10 per search.
The Facebook-owned company initially said a ‘low percentage’ of accounts had been affected, although hackers claim six million Instagram accounts hacked. Instagram has since responded its users with its advice on how to protect accounts and report mistrustful activity.
Claiming to be Russian and calling themselves ‘Doxagram’, hackers advertised the details of all accounts on online forums along with links to the dark web. The advertisement reads, ‘it’s only $10 to find celebrity contact info’.
One website linked to the Instagram hack has since been recorded, buying domain names that hacker use. A certified Instagram account of the President of the U.S.A., handle by the White House social media team, is also among the accounts that have been exposed. The co-founder Mike Krieger said,
“We quickly fixed the bug, and have been working with law enforcement on the matter.”
He further added that passwords had not been revealed by the security flaw. While the company is making its efforts to fix this Instagram hack, you can take some extra care to maintain the privacy of your account. Here’s how to protect your Instagram account from being hacked.
You may also like: Instagram Stories Turns One: Here’s How It Celebrates Its First Anniversary
How to Protect Your Account on Instagram?
When the scale of the hack on the photo-sharing website emerged, it started offering its official advice on what to do in case your account has been affected. The company stated that users should exercise additional caution if they get any calls, text messages, or emails from anonymous or doubtful sources.
Besides, Instagram encouraged its users to report any unusual activity via its reporting tools. To access these tools, tap on the three horizontal dots (…) or Menu button from your profile. A pop up will arise along with various options. Select the Report a Problem option and then Spam or Abuse.
Instagram has also an official page offering users its security tips to keep their account protected and what to do if they think their account has been exposed to hackers. And if an account has been affected, users should change their password or send themselves a password reset email.
It also recommends users to enable two-factor authentication on their accounts for additional security.
Also recommended: How to Post Instagram Photos from Computer
How to Turn on Two-factor Authentication on Instagram?
- Navigate to the Settings tab at the top-right side of your profile
- Scroll down until you find the two-factor authentication option. Simply tap on it to continue
- Tap on the Require Security Code option
- You’ll then require to add a phone number to your account
- Once done, a code will be sent to your phone whenever you or anybody tries to sign into your Instagram account
Although six million Instagram accounts hacked, you can save yourself by following the above-mentioned security tips. However, the hack only worked on 2016 versions of the app, meaning anyone who has recently updated his/her Instagram app is safe.