How Do Instagram Accounts Get Hacked?

There’s nothing worse than realising that your Instagram account has been hacked – especially if you rely on the platform…

There’s nothing worse than realising that your Instagram account has been hacked – especially if you rely on the platform as a core part of your business, or as a main form of communication with friends, family members, and other connections and contacts.

While actions like regularly updating your password and adding extra security measures can help to protect your Instagram account, the increasingly sophisticated malware and hacker measures mean that getting hacked is more common than ever.

Here are some of the main ways that hackers can gain access to an Instagram account – and what to do if you think your account has been hacked.

Hacking Via Malicious Software

This is one of the most common access points for hackers. 

If you download something dodgy, or access a website that comes with warnings, then you may be exposing yourself to hackers that use malicious software to gain entry to your profiles and accounts. 

Hacking Via a Scam

The rise of online scams has made headline news in recent years, with more victims than ever losing money and finding that their personal data and information has been leaked via a scam. 

These tend to present themselves as regular messages containing a link. This link, when clicked on, gives hackers access to all sorts of information such as your passwords and other personal information – allowing them to log into your accounts. 

Hacking Via a Scam

Hacking Via Third Party Apps

Instagram supports countless third party app integrations. However, if you don’t protect your accounts across all of these different apps, you could be exposing your Instagram account to potential hackers. 

Hacking Via a Poor Password

Finally, one of the biggest culprits is a weak password; especially one that is easy to guess, or which you use across a multitude of different apps and platforms. 

Top 3 Signs That Your Instagram Has Been Hacked

  1. Any account activity that you can’t connect back to your own usage. Unusual activity is one of the first things to look for if you are worried that your account has been hacked – including post likes and comments, and DMs. DMs can be particularly damaging if the hackers are using your account to try and scam other users, so if you are worried that you have been hacked then make sure to reach out to anyone who has received a message from your account recently. 
  2. If you cannot log into your own account. If a hacker has accessed your account and changed your login credentials, then you will find you’re unable to access your account as normal. 
  3. New followers that you didn’t engage with yourself. This is another obvious sign that you may have been hacked, as any follow activity that you didn’t do yourself may well have come from a hacker with access to your account. 

If any of these signs are familiar or are actions that you have noticed on your own Instagram account, then you may have been hacked.

Here’s what to do if you think your account has been subject to a recent hacking. 

What To Do If Your Instagram Has Been Hacked

If you’re concerned that your Instagram has been hacked, the first thing to do is to log out of all devices via the app settings.

  1. Click on the menu button in the top right hand corner of your profile screen
  2. Select ‘Settings and Privacy’
  3. Click on ‘Accounts Centre’ then ‘Password and Security’
  4. Here, you can see where you’re logged in as part of your security. Clicking on this tab will give you an overview of the devices that are currently logged into your account
  5. If there are any listed that you do not recognise, delete them immediately

In this same area of your settings, you can set up an alert for any new login activity. This is a good way to monitor and keep an eye on future issues, letting you know whenever another device attempts to log into your account.

As part of your own security measures, it is also important to change your Instagram login password and take stock of the third party apps that have been allowed access to your account. Removing access for these third party apps can be a positive step towards protecting yourself from future vulnerability. 

We hope this helps, not just in identifying whether your Instagram account has been hacked, but in taking the right steps to protect your account moving forward! 

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