Instagram to Holders of Suspicious Accounts: Identify Yourselves

Potential coordinated inauthentic activity or bots are the targets

IDs will be stored securely and deleted within 30 days Michael Burrell/iStock

Instagram is taking steps to weed out coordinated inauthentic behavior and keep its platform bot-free.

The Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing network said Thursday that in cases where it sees a pattern of behavior that could potentially be inauthentic, it will require the account holder to verify their identity by submitting ID from this list.

Instagram wrote in a blog post, “We will look at a range of signals to determine if an account holder needs to confirm their information. We want to be clear that this change will apply only to a small number of our community. Most people will not be affected. This includes accounts potentially engaged in coordinated inauthentic behavior, or when we see the majority of someone’s followers are in a different country to their location, or if we find signs of automation, such as bot accounts, for example. If we see signs of potential inauthentic activity, we will require the account holder to confirm who they are and, once an account holder verifies their information, their account will function as usual unless we have reason to investigate further.”

IDs will be stored securely, deleted within 30 days and not shared on the account holder’s profile, and Instagram said that should someone refuse to comply, their content may receive reduced distribution, or the account may be disabled altogether. David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.