An Age Old Instagram Hoax has Returned- and Proceeded to Trick Everybody

Person on tablet.

Person on tablet.

Every now and then, Instagram is flooded with posts claiming that their rules are changing. Dating back to 2007, [1] an Instagram hoax has been repeatedly pulled which announces that anything you have ever posted on Instagram (even deleted posts) will become public. Now it’s happening again, and even though Adam Mosseri, the head of Instagram, has said that the posts are not real, people continue to fall for it.

In 2007, 2012, and now, 2019, a message has been posted on the social app, Instagram, quickly gaining popularity from the warning it issues. The message claims that Instagram will be taking ownership of all (even deleted) of a user’s content- unless users posted a disclaimer saying that they did not consent to the action.

“Everything you’ve ever posted becomes public from today,” the hoax message going around Instagram reads, “even messages that have been deleted or the photos not allowed.” Instagram users have been screenshotting and posting the message on their own accounts as a warning for their followers. Unfortunately, the message is fake. The news channel that the message mentions is not an actual news outlet, and officials at Instagram have publicly stated that the message is fake.

By Wednesday morning, however, many who had posted the message had deleted it, but not before several celebrities and politicians had fallen for the hoax.



  1. ^Rosenblatt, Kalhan. “A years-old Instagram hoax is back — and it’s tricking celebrities and politicians.” NBC News, 21 Aug. 2019, (go back  ↩)

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