So, it’s been a while since I’ve done any sort of a discussion post and I’ve spent the last 24 hours wondering if I should even type this up and bring more attention to what’s happening…but then I figured there are definitely other accounts that this is happening to and more importantly (to me), I want it known.
It came to my attention yesterday morning that someone had stolen my photo, bio, and links from instagram and started a fake account after removing one letter of the user name.
fake account on the left, my real account on the right
As you can see, they’ve taken out the @’s in front of the two accounts I list in my bio as to not give me the notification. They’ve also blocked me, so I’m unable to report them from my 1113p account and prove that they’re an imposter.
I started out by screencapping everything I could find. Thankfully, I had several followers (seriously, like 75 people, mega thanks to all of you) send me a message that it was happening. Since I was blocked on 1113p, I found them from my personal account and reported them. I believed that since my personal account also mentioned my 1113p account (and vice versa), this would be a no-brainer.
Instagram came back and said they weren’t violating any community rules and that if I didn’t want to see their content, to block them.
So, that’s some shit, but okay, I could almost understand it.
I decided to hit up google and see what I could find about reporting them as an imposter. I found a form online with instructions on how to report the account. Of course, it was all preceded by a long winded set of paragraphs on how Instagram takes fake accounts seriously and will look into the matter immediately.
Part of the form requires a selfie while holding an approved form of ID. I wasn’t thrilled for either of these things, but fuck it, right? All in the name of getting the account removed.
The form was filled out with the information, the photo was uploaded, and the waiting began.
And then I immediately received this:
Basically, a “reply to this email with your photo again so we can prove everything”. So, I did. And then waited some more.
I received an email stating that they couldn’t verify the ID to match the account. I looked at my account and then did even more googling. I found this article about someone battling an imposter account and saw that they had an issue with the name listed on the account (full name vs shortened name). I went back into my account and added my full name, then resubmitted.
And received the same message.
So, I took a new photo after pulling my hair out of a ponytail and trying to make it sort of resemble the 21047293729 year old photo on my license…
And received the same message.
I’m at a complete loss at what to do here. I’m submitting the info Instagram wants. I’m explaining the entire situation in the official form. I’m providing links to the fake account. Countless people have reported it…and it’s still up and running.
I guess I’m typing this up to share what’s happening.
To let people know that I haven’t started another account.
To make it known that there is an imposter.
Edit 4/7/2021: As of this morning, the imposter has altered the user name and is still using my photo, bio, and links. I’ve reported it on all of my accounts and resubmitted a report with this new information. Hopefully IG will actually do something about it.
Edit 4/12/21: IG shows they are actively reviewing the report I made from my dog’s account.
Edit 4/15/21: the imposter has now taken to messaging people and telling them they’ve won the giveaway and to click a link and submit their address to claim the prize.
Additionally, they sent the winning message to my personal account (which I’ve since made private) and with that, I was able to see the imposter account and see that they stole my Leigh Bardugo giveaway photo, along with the caption.
The upside to this is that I was able to report the imposter again and actually claim that they were impersonating my account. I haven’t been able to do that yet.
Edit 4/16/21: I woke up to an email from IG stating that my copyright infringement report was unclear and the evidence provided wasn’t enough.
I checked the account to see that they had stopped using my information and stole someone else’s, including their giveaway photo. I messaged her with a screen cap to let her know what was going on and briefly explain what I’ve been doing.
Since the imposter still had my photo up, I reported it again and after about 8 hours, it had been deleted. I don’t know if IG did it or the imposter did, but for now it seems that this is behind me.
Have you heard of this happening to other accounts?