Help Stop Catfish Accounts on Social Media

Help Stop Catfish Accounts on Social Media

My identity has been stolen twice – that I am aware of – to create catfish accounts on Instagram. The first time, they used a variation of my name and the same profile photo I was using at the time. I direct messaged them, calling them out on their behavior and they blocked me. The account was taken down, however. This week, they used my photo as the profile photo with another author’s name. That account also appears to have been removed.

I use the same username on all my social media accounts. If the account isn’t @melinadruga, then it isn’t me. Period. Please report it.

I wish that Instagram (and other platforms) would allow non-celebrities to verify their accounts, but until that day comes, here are some tips for recognizing catfish accounts:

  • The username contains numbers, especially a long string of them.
  • There is no profile photo or it’s a photo of someone else.
  • The profile bio is blank or there’s just something off about it. All those guys claiming to be surgeons and soldiers looking for love, for example.
  • Following a large number of people with few or no people following back. Or the follower count is large but there’s zero engagement.
  • The account is private combined with any of the warning signs above.
  • There are no posts, or the photos have no captions (and often no hashtags).

Do you have any tips to add to the list?

Follow the Official Accounts

The following links are my official accounts on social media.  Anything else is a catfish who needs to be reported: