Instagram photo

Third party apps that promise to get Instagram users more likes and followers have become ubiquitous on the social media platform. For users trying to gain influencer status, and make money through sponsored posts, the apps do have a certain appeal. But the days of being able to buy likes and followers on Instagram is coming to an end.

Instagram announced that they will begin using AI to remove accounts that promote and use these services because the “behavior is bad for the community” and in violation of Instagram’s Community Guidelines and Terms of Use.

Account holders who are using the services will receive an in-app message from Instagram that the inauthentic likes, followers and comments have been removed. Then they’ll be prompted to update their password to secure the account. The password change is important because to utilize the third-party apps, users often have to enter their login info, which makes their accounts vulnerable to hacking. In a blog post Instagram noted that users might not even realize that they’ve shared their login info with a third-party app. Changing your password if you are prompted will save your account from being deleted from the social media platform.

Even if you haven’t been using third party apps that Instagram is cracking down on, you might see a drop in your followers over the next few days. It’s also a good reminder that regularly changing your password on social media platforms like Instagram is a safe bet.