Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge
Instagram scammers have developed a lucrative “banning” racket, according to a new report from Motherboard. For around $60, some scammers will get banned whatever Instagram account you choose, friend or foe, and often the scammers make even more money on the backend by helping the targeted users regain access to their accounts.
The process, according to interviews and material reviewed by Motherboard, involves using a verified account to impersonate a target (their name, photo, bio), and then reporting the target as an impersonator to get them banned. Apparently, as long as the target has a human in their profile picture the method works.
Motherboard writes that other users they spoke to also had…