Has your Instagram account been hacked and suddenly you can’t access it?
The reasons for this to have happened can be varied, but one of the most common is the action of hackers who access the account – in general, these attackers have access to the profile of users who click on unknown links received by SMS, WhatsApp or email.
There are some characteristic signs that an account has been hacked:
- Contacts start receiving suspicious messages;
- Unusual posts, different from what the user usually publishes;
- Changed passwords;
- Accesses made in distant places, not frequented by the user;
- Emails received about unauthorized access;
- Sudden increase or decrease in the number of followers and followers.
If the account has been hacked, there are several actions that can be taken. According to Instagram, some of these recovery steps may not be available depending on the type of account you are trying to recover. However, the platform recommends trying them all.
Check your email inbox
If you have received an email from email@example.com stating that the email address has been changed, you must undo the change by selecting revert this change in that message.
If additional information has also been changed (eg password) and it is not possible to change the email address, the user must request an Instagram login link or security code.
Request an Instagram login link
To confirm that the user does indeed have an account, it is necessary to ask the platform to send a login link to your email address or phone number.
To request a login link:
- On the login screen, tap “Get help signing in” (Android) or “Forgot your password?” (Iphone);
- Enter the username, email address or phone number associated with the account and tap “Next”. Observation: if you don’t have access to the username, email address or phone number associated with the account, enter the login information you used most recently and tap “Can’t reset your password?” below the “Next” button and follow the on-screen instructions;
- User must select their email address or phone number and tap “Next”;
- The user must click the login link in their email or text message (SMS) and follow the on-screen instructions.
Request an Instagram security or support code
If you cannot recover your account with the login link sent by the platform, you must request support.
To request Instagram support:
The user must enter a secure email address that only the user can access. After submitting the request, they should receive an email from Instagram with the next steps.
Screenshot of Instagram on mobile — Photo: Solen Feyissa/ Unsplash
If the user submitted a support request for an account without photos, they should receive an autoresponder email from the Meta support team.
The platform will ask the user to help verify the identity by providing the email address or phone number with which he is registered on the social network and the type of device used at the time of registration (example: iPhone, Android, iPad, other).
If the user requests support for an account with photos, they will be asked to take a video selfie by turning their heads in different directions to help the platform verify that they are a real person and confirm their identity.
After uploading the video selfie to help verify their identity, the user will receive an email from Instagram at the secure email address provided. The platform uses this video to ensure that the user is a real person and who they claim to be. The uploaded video will never be visible on Instagram and will be deleted within 30 days.
If the platform is unable to confirm the identity of the uploaded video, it is possible to upload a new video, which will be reviewed again.
Observation: Instagram does not use facial recognition. The social network uses video selfies to ensure that the user is a real person.
If you are still able to log in to your Instagram account
If the user thinks their Instagram account has been hacked or there has been an attempted hacking attack, but they are still able to log in, there are a few things they can do to help keep their profile safe:
- Change your password or send yourself a password reset email;
- Enable two-factor authentication for additional security;
- Confirm that the phone number and email address in the account settings are correct;
- Check the Account Center and remove any linked accounts that the user does not recognize;
- Revoke access to any suspicious third-party apps.