Instagram users hacked by smoothie spammer [update]

By , Jul 27, 2013

Instagram App of the Year

If you’ve been having trouble logging into your Instagram account this morning, or have noticed any strange photos posted to your stream, you’re not alone. Several users are reporting that they’ve been hacked on the popular photo sharing network.

Reports first started surfacing about the issue on Twitter around 11PM last night, according to a report by The Verge. Users who suffered attacks complained that unauthorized photos along with strange URLs had been posted to their accounts…

Here’s The Verge‘s Nathan Olivarez-Giles:

“Instagram users are taking to Twitter tonight to complain that they have been hacked, with photos of smoothies posted to their accounts without permission. Those affected also say that a strange URL has been placed in their Instagram profile bios…

Some Instagram users began tweeting that they were locked out of their user profiles after trying to reset their passwords. Others said that photos from the breach disappeared before they had a chance to remove them. In most cases, the added bio URLs remained in place even after the photos were taken down.”

At this point, the breadth of the attack isn’t clear. We don’t know how many users have been hacked, or how it’s being done. It could be a simple phishing scam pulling user logins, or, worst case scenario, hackers could have infiltrated Instagram servers.

Major companies—particularly those that provide Internet services with large user bases—are quickly learning how damaging hackers can be to their business. Both Viber and Apple were attacked last week, and Apple still hasn’t really fully recovered.

We’ll let you know when we have more information on this Instagram attack, but for the time being, you should probably stay away from tapping on strange-looking URLs. It sounds like they are made out to look like BBC news links, if that helps.

UPDATE: in a statement to iDB, an Instagram spokesperson confirmed the incident:

Last night a small portion of our users experienced a spam incident where unwanted photos were posted from their accounts. Our security and spam team quickly took actions to secure the accounts involved, and the posted photos are being deleted.

If you ask me, Instagram took way too long to acknowledge the incident and failed to mention how it happened in the first place. As a user, I’d like to learn more about the source of the incident.

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  • Z3r0ViP

    You’re not alot? lol

  • Osama Muhammed

    instagram is so buggy and so damn stupid/laggy/more buggy in browsers

    • DarekSlaby

      You must be using android. Works perfectly fine on iOS.

      • NickChima

        So typical of you to turn this into an IOS vs Android thing. He is referring to going on Instagram on a PC browser or a phone browser. The OS has nothing to do with it.

      • Kjah

        Actually it does have to do with OS. Obviously a phone with faster processor/better browser is going to load and work smoother. Safari is definitely the smoothest browser on mobile devices (chrome does though have more features)

      • Goldswimmer

        Exactly Kjah, An android with 2 gigs of ram and a quad core processor would work much better than our latest iphone still lagging behind with at most 1 gig of ram, and a dual core processor, and quite honestly safari sucks… Chrome is way faster and more stable. As for Android Vs IOS its really a personal preference…

      • Guest

        Let me reiterate, the OS has n

      • NickChima

        Let me reiterate, OS has nothing to do with it; if an android device with 2 gigs of RAM is used, there is no denying that its speed would be flawless as opposed to say an iPhone 5 with 1 gig of RAM. I love Apple products but all this Dickriding is making me sick

  • Liam Mulcahy

    too much stuff getting hacked

    • Jack

      agreed :-/

  • Victor

    At least idownloadblog will never get hacked…!

    • Misti curia

      Nek minnut

      • Yunsar

        lol I swear I was just about to write that!

  • Frank Anthony

    Lots Of Hacking Stuff Lately.. Well, i guess everybody should stay offline for a while. Oh! That won’t help either as i read today that One hacker died ahead of his presentation that was suppose to hold next week. And do you know the topic of the presentation? “Hacking Human Presentation”.. Seriously no place is safe anymore for this hackin madness. Literally anything can be hacked. Both online & offline. And human is not an exception now. Oh Lord forgive, We don’t!

  • http://www.iDownloadBlog.com Sebastien

    My account got hacked too. The weird thing is that it seems to have been hacked minutes after I last used it. My password isn’t a weak password so I’d be surprised if it was a simple brute force attack. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was some sort of security flaw in Instagram servers. We’re still waiting for Instagram to at least acknowledge the issue…

    • Pusheen

      Now we know your password has at least one number xD let’s attack him folks

      • http://www.iDownloadBlog.com Sebastien

        Good luck

    • Rares

      Sebastien, if your password was made with words it’s understandable that you got hacked but if your password is just some random letters and numbers than this may be a security flaw from instagram servers, I suggest using caracteres like “-” or some capitals. It never fails.

    • Jack

      problem is there’s a flaw everywhere. it’s only when it’s brought to everyone’s attention do things get done to tighten up security, which imo should have been done in the FIRST PLACE. nuff said

    • Colleen

      I’m in the same boat; I had just uploaded a picture to my account, and then I was hacked. I changed my password and deleted everything within a minute of it happening, yet my hashtags have been broken ever since. Instagram hasn’t replied to a single email I’ve sent them about it in the last 2 months.

  • http://www.funtechblog.wordpress.com/ bobby

    I’m trying to think of something funny or witty to say, but I can’t think of anything.

    • Mika Salakka 

      At least you are being honest about it.

    • Jack

      no need. im laughing at the thought of you trying to think of something funny to say ^^

      • http://www.funtechblog.wordpress.com/ bobby

        haha ok

  • Carlos

    Now I want a smoothie.

    • Jack

      lmao ;D

  • n0ahcruz3

    RIP barnaby Jack.

  • Internet AWESOME

    My account got hacked as well. Well I changed my password.

  • D.

    Take it down permanently! Lol

  • Mark

    This happened to me last week. I also have been following random users for months now. They just show up in my feed. Can’t seem to stop it.

  • Cesar D

    I want to try that ._. smoothie seems delicious :B

  • Joseph

    This must’ve been done by some smooth(ie) criminals (bad pun is bad).

  • Colleen

    Ever since my account was hacked by this fruit thing, my hashtags haven’t worked. For 2 months I’ve emailed Instagram about this ongoing problem, and every single one has been ignored. Please have Instagram acknowledge and follow up with this problem.

    • http://www.iDownloadBlog.com Sebastien

      I have the exact same problem as you. They won’t respond to my emails either. I can add hashtags to my photos, but when I click on the hastag, my photos don’t show in the feed, basically making the use of hashtags completely useless.

      • Colleen

        Yeah, it’s pretty frustrating. I had my sister add hashtags in a comment on my pictures — that doesn’t work either. I created a new account and everything works fine. Really don’t want to have to abandon all my pictures and try to re-follow everyone though. Meanwhile I’ve gone to events that have specific hashtags, and none of my pictures get added to them. It’s definitely sucked the fun out of what used to be my favorite app. I filed a report and received the automated response that assured me I’d get an actual response within a few business days… that was weeks ago. No response.

      • http://www.iDownloadBlog.com Sebastien

        I published a post about this issue. You can have a look at it and share your experience http://www.idownloadblog.com/2013/10/16/following-spam-attack-instagram-has-yet-to-fix-some-broken-features/