A number of social media platforms including Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter this week took measures to target users involved in reslling hijacked user accounts across their platforms, cybersecurity expert Brian Krebs reported.
These users who have now been banned have played a major role in facilitating the trade and resale of highly sought-after usernames.
Hundreds of accounts have now been seized as a result of the action by the social media platforms, KrebsOnSecurity reported on Thursday.z
At the heart of the account ban effort are some of the active members belonging to OGUsers, a forum that facilitates selling access to hijacked online accounts.
This community particularly gives priority to short usernames which can be “resold for thousands of dollars”, said the report.
Instagram has confirmed to The Verge that it has disabled hundreds of accounts that were stolen as part of online hacking operations that had aimed to gain access to and sell coveted usernames.
“Today, we’re removing hundreds of accounts connected to members of the OGUsers forum. They harass, extort and cause harm to the Instagram community, and we will continue to do all we can to make it difficult for them to profit from Instagram usernames,” a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying by The Verge.
The report comes after Instagram earlier this week released a new feature that allows people recover deleted posts, in the event a hacker takes control of their account and removes posts.