Facebook Instagram and a Possible Scam
I have had an Instagram account for a few years now – where I post pictures and short videos of my crafts work, handspun yarns, band weaving, plant dyed yarns etc, and I love to see what others are creating as well. I didn’t log on much for a few weeks over the Christmas break. When I did try to log in again in early January, my Instagram account had been suspended – reason: posting inappropriate content. I tried to contact both Instagram and Facebook but was unsuccessful in contacting or in restoring my account. I am posting this article to let others know what can go wrong.
I thought it very strange that I had been accused of inappropriate content so wondered if my account had been hacked. I also had some problems a few weeks earlier as I was getting locked out of my IG account when I used my phone. When I use FB or any other website, I don’t allow all the tracking that the sites wish to add to my browsing history. I also use a VPN – do they all really need to know where I live? I just say No! Perhaps this may have contributed to the IG ban?
After several attempts to restore my IG account, I gave up and started a new one. This time I have set it up as a stand alone personal Instagram account, not connected to the Facebook Meta or the Business version. When I post photos on IG, I will add links to my Paivatar website rather than to the IG shopping option, as it seems the ‘Meta Universe’ can be taken away at any time.
My new IG account is:
Paivatar on Instagram: paivatar999
All Fiber Arts Facebook Group
Last week I posted a notice to my Facebook friends and groups to let them know what had happened to my IG page. I posted the message on our All Fiber Arts Group page All Fiber Arts Group
In one of the conversations about my IG dilemma, a person called M- replied, saying she works for Meta and she said she could help investigate what happened. I thought this a bit strange, but ok, it would be great if she could help. She asked me to DM her so I did.
Here is the conversation:
All Fiber Arts Facebook Group Page
Hello P-, sorry for the inconvenience and troubles this may have caused, when did it happen?
M- This happened in early January. I didn’t log into IG much over the Christmas break, and when I did, it had been closed ‘for posting inappropriate content’ I think it said. Ah well.. I won’t rely so much on FB or IG anymore I suppose, as they have the power to turn the switch off at any time.
P- don’t expect anything positive from the support service they haven’t been functional since the start of covid I work at meta I can assist you with reviewing your account
Really? that would be amazing! And greatly appreciated – thank you.
5 days later:
M- just curious… any updates on my account review? thank you.
P- send me a Dm
(TIMESTAMPS ARE IN UK TIME)
Hi M– It’s P-. Any news on my IG account problem? Thanks, P
Okay what’s your username let me run a check on your account?
Hold while I run a check on your account
Is your mail still linked to this account?
I think so. I used a different email to the new IG account.
What mail do you need linked to the account
It’s important for the reactivation process
ok – how do I check that? or are you able to
Just give me a mail you need linked to the account
I can do that from this end
I would run you through the reactivation process now and I will need your full attention while at it
I would need to generate a bypass reactivation code from instagram servers which would be applied on your account
After this you will receive a confirmation mail containing a link, when tapped you will be redirected to a webpage age where you are to reset your login details
After this your account will be restored
Do you understand me?
I think so
firstname.lastname@example.org will get an email to reset the login?
Generating the bypass reactivation code cost $150, can you afford this so we can proceed?
any idea why my account was deactivated?
can you please let me know why this happened?
I am not willing to pay FB or IG any money for deactivating
Your account was disabled because you disobeyed the community guidelines
That’s why the reactivation process costs money
How much can you afford for this process?
what guidelines did I disobey? I was not aware that I did.
That it was what it said when I ran a check on the account
I would like to know so that I don’t make this mistake again.
You will see the reason in the confirmation mail after your account is reactivated
there must be some record of the infraction?
It would be cleared up after the reactivation process
So are you ready to proceed?
I think I have to think on this for abit. its a lot of money
For the memories it’s worth it do you think?
Let me know when you make a decision
yes there was a lot of useful info on those pages. I will have a think
That’s why we are here to help out
So when you are ready to proceed let me know
You won’t regret this decision
CONVERSATION REPORTED TO FB AS A SCAM MESSAGE – 15:20
FB – AUTO RESPONSE BACK – THIS PERSON WOULD BE BLOCKED FROM SENDING ME FURTHER MESSAGES…
So I was very surprised this morning to find another message from the mysterious M.
( I was unsure of the correct way to report this as there are many options to choose from – the FB Reporting system is difficult to use)
DM conversation continues on…
Hello are you still interested in our services? Your request would be deleted within the next 24hour if we don’t get a response. Thank you
How do I know that you are from Meta?
I have my ID
And she sent me a photo of her Meta ID – signed by MZ himself…
Hello are you still interested in our services?
Your request would be automatically deleted within the next 48hours due to traffic on our servers
React with a thumbs up if you are ready to proceed
I will continue to post updates to this saga, if it continues.
I was very surprised that Facebook / Instagram charges $150 USD or ‘whatever you can afford’, to get your account restored. Or does it?
Perhaps this is legitimate – but perhaps not.
I may be getting a bit old, but I wasn’t born yesterday. Sigh… it’s a very sad world these days.
I will be changing the All Fiber Arts Group page to a Private Status.
As I research into this further, the Instagram account scam is worse than I thought.