I had ZERO idea last week when I shared my Instagram Insecurities that so many of you would identify and relate. Thank you for all your comments, encouragement, support, and love.  I felt way less alone because of it and I’m glad that a new conversation about self-worth was started as a result.

Because so many of you asked, today I’m going to share how I determine whether an Instagram account is a fake/spam/ghost account and how I block them.  I suggest everyone go through their followers and block (which ends up removing them as your follower) as many of these accounts as you can find because your association with them really effects your own Instagram visibility and reach based on the new IG algorithm.  Below are three red flags I look for when determining if an account is real or not.  Bear in mind that this is not a blanket solution for all accounts.  There are real and wonderful people with real accounts who may fall into one of these categories, but those accounts usually have identifying factors like a website link or email address.

RED FLAG ONE// THE INACTIVE ACCOUNT

thealisonhoward.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In most cases an account like this is fake because there is zero activity.  By activity I mean that the owner of the account hasn’t posted more than one photo and is following no one.  It doesn’t make sense that they have 61 followers.  You have to trust your gut during this process, but if this account were to follow me I’d block it.  It could be a new account, but since there is zero info about this person it wouldn’t bother me to block it (or at least keep an eye on it).

RED FLAG TWO// THE GHOST ACCOUNT

thealisonhoward.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This “ghost” account has no profile photo (aka ghost) – which is a red flag for me in most cases.  The fact that they have zero posts and are following nearly 700 people only confirms that something isn’t right.  It could just be an IG gawker.  I have two friends that have accounts like this – no profile pic, no posts – they only have IG to keep see what their friends on it are doing but are only following a few hundred accounts, if that.  Unless this is a friend of yours, in most cases it’s an account that should be blocked.

RED FLAG THREE// THE “FAMOUS” TEEN ACCOUNT

thealisonhoward.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have no idea who Jordyn Madison is but I don’t think her mama would appreciate that image of her booty on social media.  As a mom, thats the first thing I thought of when I saw her account.  Then I prayed for her, because what is going on?!  Then I prayed for her mom because maybe this is what 14 looks like now? (Please Lord, no!)  Then I panicked and prayed for ME because I have an almost 12 year old!  GAHHHHAGAH! …. Deep breath Alison …. Okay, back to business…  There is no way this teen who loves SnapChat filters has 12,000 REAL followers and only 15 posts. Also, her link to tumblr is just that – a link to tumblr.  Not to her tumbler, to the tumblr website itself.  So basically it’s a dummy link to make her account look more legitimate.  Additionally, the numbers don’t add up at all and for those reasons I blocked her.  Don’t get me wrong, she could be totally legit, but she’s obviously using some type of follower-buying app or program, and because of that I don’t want my account associated with hers.

To block these accounts simply click on the three dots at the top right of the profile and select ‘BLOCK’.  Its that easy (unless you have to do this 3,000 times – that takes more work). Follow your intuition and happy unfollowing!

Shine On!
Alison