How to Spot & Remove Fake Followers on Instagram

May 24, 2024
11 Min
Peter Nettesheim
| Author
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How to Spot & Remove Fake Followers on Instagram

In today's digital landscape, cultivating an authentic and active community on Instagram holds paramount importance for both individuals/creators and businesses. Yet, the infiltration of fake followers can damage the credibility and impact of your Instagram presence. 

These bots or ghosts followers do not increase your brand awareness, sales, reach or your engagement. And while the follow/unfollow strategy might have worked in the past, Instagram’s algorithm is constantly learning and changing. In the midst of all the content that is being posted every second, Instagram wants to reward authentic engagement.

What are Fake Followers?

Fake Instagram followers are artificial accounts that are created or acquired with the purpose of inflating an individual's or a brand's follower count on the platform. These followers are typically generated by bots or automated software programs, or they may be purchased from third-party services that offer followers in exchange for payment.

To learn how to detect fake followers first, you can check our comprehensive guide on how to spot fake Instagram accounts.

Why Removing Fake Followers Matters

Improved Engagement Metrics

Removing fake followers can lead to more accurate engagement metrics, providing you with valuable insights into your audience's behavior and preferences.

Enhanced Credibility

A genuine and engaged follower base enhances your credibility and trustworthiness on Instagram, making you more attractive to potential collaborators and followers. 

Furthermore, credibility is key for a brand’s social media success, as it improves the chances of collaboration opportunities and growth. 

Increased Visibility and Reach

By maintaining a real and active follower base, you'll improve your chances of appearing in Instagram's explore page and reaching a broader audience organically.

As mentioned in the beginning of the article, Instagram’s algorithm rewards real engagement by promoting those posts and accounts. So if you want to go viral, the content you create isn’t the only thing that matters, but also the quality of your account.

How to Spot or Detect Fake Followers

1. Manual Inspection

Start by manually inspecting your follower list for suspicious accounts. Look for profiles with generic usernames, no profile picture, or a disproportionately low number of posts compared to their follower count.

2. Followers Analytics Tools

Utilize third-party tools like Influencer Hero's Instagram Follower Analytics Tool to analyze your follower base comprehensively. These tools can provide insights into follower authenticity, engagement rates, and growth patterns, helping you identify fake followers efficiently.

3. Instagram's Built-in Features:

Instagram also offers features to manage your followers, such as blocking or removing followers directly from your account settings. You can also utilize Instagram Insights to monitor your account's performance and identify any irregularities in your follower growth.

How to Remove Instagram Fake Followers

Before jumping to manual removals or turning to third-party tools to delete mass followers quickly, you must take into account that removing too many followers at once can seem suspicious to Instagram, resulting in possible blockages. Marketers recommend sticking to 100 followers max. Per day.

Manual Removal

As it is slower and directly from Instagram, this method can be the safest way of removing fake followers from your account. 

Go to your Profile, and click on your Followers list. From there, you can directly remove each bot or ghost account simply by clicking on ‘Remove’.

You can also opt for blocking these accounts, by going to their Profile, clicking on the three dots at the top right, and selecting ‘Block’. This will prevent them from engaging with your content in the future and help maintain the integrity of your follower base.

Third-Party Tools

These tools utilize different algorithms and metrics to analyze follower activity and engagement patterns, helping users identify fake followers and mass removal.

  1. Spamguard: the most renowned tool as it is specifically designed to help identify and remove fake and inactive followers on Instagram. 
  2. AiGrowth: focused on overall Instagram growth, this app also provides solutions for addressing Instagram ghost, inactive, and fake followers.
  3. Ghost follower: this app uses Ai to remove fake followers based on filters you select beforehand. It also allows for creating a blacklist of accounts.

How to Keep Fake Followers Away

Avoid Buying Followers

Focus on growing your followers organically through quality content and genuine engagement, instead of falling for a temporary solution with high risk of harm that is buying followers.

Be Selective with Third-Party Apps

Be cautious about the permissions you grant to these apps, ensuring they don't have access to add followers to your account without your consent.

Monitor Your Followers

Check your follower list regularly for any suspicious accounts. Use tools like Influencer Hero’s Instagram Followers Analytics to analyze follower quality and engagement metrics. 

If you notice a sudden spike in followers that looks suspicious, block and report these accounts to Instagram.

Engage Authentically

Post high-quality, relevant content that resonates with your target audience. This attracts real followers who are genuinely interested in your content. Also, build an active community with your followers by responding to comments and messages. 

Choose Wisely

If you collaborate with influencers, ensure they have a genuine follower base. Again, tools like Influencer Hero's Instagram Followers Analytics Tool to vet influencers and avoid partnerships with those who have a significant number of fake followers. You can assess fake followers using our free Instagram Fake Follower checker tool

Stay Informed

Stay updated on the latest trends and best practices for Instagram. Be aware of Instagram's algorithm updates and adjust your strategy accordingly to avoid practices that might attract fake followers.

By implementing these strategies, you can reduce the likelihood of accumulating fake followers and maintain an authentic and engaged follower base on Instagram. This approach not only enhances your account's credibility but also improves the effectiveness of your influencer marketing efforts.


Removing fake followers from your Instagram account is essential for maintaining authenticity, credibility, and effectiveness on the platform. By following the methods and steps outlined in this guide by Influencer Hero, you can ensure that your Instagram account is free from fake followers and positioned for success in the competitive world of social media marketing. Remember, quality always beats quantity when it comes to building a genuine and engaged following on Instagram.

Why is it important to remove fake followers from my Instagram account?
What are ghost followers and how do they differ from fake followers?
Can fake followers lead to my account being penalized by Instagram?
How often should I check my follower list for fake accounts?
Is it better to remove fake followers manually or use a third-party tool?

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