Facebook has recently had a bad reputation when it comes to users’ private data. Now, there’s one more issue that has come up for Facebook and that’s an app called Ghosty. Ghosty is an App that allowed it’s users to view private Instagram accounts through crowd sourced data has been told by Facebook to shut down its operations. The app allowed several private profiles to be viewed.
The app is already shady to begin with. The way this app works is by asking for the user’s account login credentials at signup and that’s not all. It asks users to invite at least one friend in order to continue using it.
Now imagine multiple people downloading the app starting to use it. This would get the app access to so many new accounts and be able to view profiles of the accounts being followed by those who signup.
This clearly violates the terms of service set by Instagram and hopefully Facebook will work harder to make sure that user’s data that they want to keep private from the public doesn’t get out and this would involve them keeping an eye out for such apps in the future.
Facebook has provided the following statement regarding this:
Yes, this app violates our terms. This functionality has never been available through our API.
We will be sending a cease and desist letter to Ghosty ordering them to immediately stop their activities on Instagram, among other requests.
We are investigating and planning further enforcement relating to this developer.
Ghosty has been available on the Google Play Store since April of this year and has 500,000 downloads which would give it a large database of private Instagram profiles. Hopefully Facebook can be more careful in the future regarding these types of apps.