How to detect a fake profile on Instagram and other social networks

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how to detect a fake profile on instagram and other social networks
how to detect a fake profile on instagram and other social networks

Social networks have become a digital service that most users use daily. Thanks to platforms like Instagram, Internet users can communicate and maintain personal and work ties regardless of distance. However, this can be dangerous, since there are many fake profiles. 

According to Meta estimates, Facebook has 5% of monthly active users (about 148 million) with potentially fake accounts. On X (when it was still Twitter), it was estimated that there were 12 million profiles that were not real. And, although there is no data from Instagram, TikTok and other social networks, they also have a multitude of fake accounts.

The reasons why fake accounts are created are many and are generally related to cyber scams. For this reason, to protect you, at ADSLZone we tell you how to detect the signs that could be clues that you are facing one of these fraudulent profiles.

Are the photos real?

One of the first details that users should look at when determining if they are facing a fake profile are the images. It is recommended that we carefully analyze the photos you have published, to check that they are not from someone else or that they were taken with AI.

The easiest tool to use to verify that the account photos have not been taken from other websites is Google Images. Simply download different photographs and drag them to the search bar of said section of Google to find the original “image source”.

 

There are other platforms to find the origin of an image, in case Google Images is not useful in certain searches. Some alternatives to this option are TinEye, Reverse Photos, Bing Visual Search, Duplichecker or Yandex Images.

On the other hand, with the advancement in AI, there are artificial images that can appear very real. Generally, these tools cannot create two identical faces, so it is advisable to ask for more photos and not settle for just the profile one. In any case, you have to pay attention to the hands, the brightness of the eyes, the strange postures, the lighting of the image and other elements that may give clues that they are deepfakes.

There are also websites that detect when an image has been developed by AI which, although not 100% accurate, can be useful. To give some examples are AI or not, Sensity, Debunkd or Smodin. 

Usernames

Sometimes, cybercriminals impersonate celebrities, family members or friends we know to lie to us. In that case, the images can be taken from the public profiles of the person involved and even use names similar to those they actually have. 

For this reason, it is advisable to make sure that they do not replace the letter ‘o’ with a zero [‘0’] or an ele [‘l’] with a capital ‘I’. A clue that can alert you that it is not the real profile is that it is a friend that you followed and, now, supposedly, you do not follow him; Or if you are famous, you may not have the blue check or a large number of followers.

It is a newly created profile

Although there are fake social media profiles, companies usually have some control to prevent this from happening. Therefore, these types of accounts do not last long, especially if they are used for crime, and scammers must constantly create new profiles , so if you are suspicious, this could be a clue that it is not a real account.

In X, the creation date appears next to the biography; on Instagram, they alert when the profile has been recently created; and, on other social networks, you can take a look at the published content. It is also advisable to keep an eye on your followers and followers.

A video call can be fake

Until recently, a video call could save any user from doubting the authenticity of the person behind an account. However, generating fake videos of people through AI tools is increasingly giving more realistic results.

To make sure you are not looking at a deepfake, pay attention that when you speak, you move your lips accordingly, or that you gesture normally and that it does not look like there are ‘glitches in the Matrix’. In addition, the brightness and movement of the eyes or lighting can be decisive.

 

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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise