Instagram recently sent a Cease and Desist request to a site that sold fake likes and engagement on the platform, causing the site to shut down in response, according to a person involved on the site and confirmation from Instagram.
The news shows Instagram’s ongoing efforts to shut down inauthentic activities on its platform, including services that can be used by influencers or anyone else to amplify their own content.
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“Sorry, LikeUp is not working :(” a message on the affected site called LikeUp.Me now says. “This service will no longer work. Sorry. Last month refunds are being processed,” the site continues . Motherboard heard of the interruption and giving up when Aleksey Bykhun, who appears to be running LikeUp.Me, contacted him via email.
“I’m looking for a small consultancy to respond to Facebook’s C&D letter,” wrote Bykhun. Facebook owns Instagram.
Previously, Instagram had sent out and quit letters to members of the user community who sell or help facilitate the exchange of stolen or parked usernames on the social network. Bykhun clarified that he was not a member and that his company did not sell accounts.
Motherboard then discovered that Bykhun was the CEO of LikeUp.Me, according to their personal website. In this regard, he claims that LikeUp.Me generated about $100,000 in revenue in 2020.
The site appears to have used a Chrome extension that promises users free likes and followers and is also called LikeUp. Bykhun apparently blocked Motherboard on Telegram when asked to comment on LikeUp.Me .
A Facebook spokesperson told Motherboard in an email that the company has ordered it to stop and desist from LikeUp.Me, that the fake involvement violates the platform’s rules and that Facebook takes action against such companies when discovered.
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