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Instagram Now Using Video Selfies To Fight Spam And Bot Accounts

Instagram is now rolling out a video selfie identification system that aims to reduce spam and bot accounts on the platform. Similar to most other social media platforms, Instagram uses a basic username and password system, with an optional secondary two-factor authentication system via an authentication app or SMS. Instagram also asks for a birthday to ensure the person is old enough to use the platform. The company doesn't currently use any form of biometric authentication.

Instagram currently allows users to create multiple accounts with different email addresses. While this is great for users with a brand account, it also enables bots to create an insane amount of accounts before Instagram catches on and suspends the accounts. Unfortunately, bots and spam accounts are inevitable on any social media platform and are a challenging problem to solve.

Related: How To Change Instagram Username (And Why You Might Not Be Able To)

As reported by XDA Developers, Matt Navarra announced on Twitter that Instagram is rolling out video selfie identification to help confirm the user is an actual human and not a bot. Navarra noted, "Meta promises not to collect biometric data" and that Instagram deletes the videos after 30 days. XDA Developers goes on to say that Meta won't be using the company's facial recognition technology and that the videos will never be visible on Instagram. The new system is only currently being used for new account signups. Existing accounts aren't being prompted to verify via the video selfie identification system.

As is the case with similar systems, privacy is a concern. Just because the company says that they won't use the data in nefarious ways doesn't prevent a hacker from obtaining and leaking that information. The other big concern would be to see how robust this system is. Will it be easily fooled by pictures or videos like some other biometric unlocking systems? Only time will tell. Some other social media platforms such as Tinder and Bumble have been using photo verification systems for years. So video verification would be a step better than those systems, in theory.

The system was first trialed last year but was ultimately shelved due to technical issues. Presumably, since then, Instagram has been working on the system to solve these technical issues and potentially make it more robust. Instagram uses AI algorithms to determine whether the user is a real person or not. So we'll see how well that holds up as more users sign up for the social media platform and as Instagram rolls it out to a broader range of accounts.

Next: Instagram Just Ripped Off TikTok... Again

Source: Matt Navarra/Twitter, XDA Developers

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