Instagram says it has fixed bug that suspended users' accounts, cut follower numbers

Thousands of Instagram users reported being locked out of their accounts Monday morning, with some saying their accounts had been suspended without warning and others losing all of their content.

Platform offers no explanation for issues that affected thousands of app's users Monday

Instagram says it has fixed a bug that left thousands of users unable to access their accounts Monday. Here, the Instagram app logo is displayed on an iPhone on Aug. 3, 2016, in London, England. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

Instagram says it has fixed a software bug that prevented thousands of users from accessing the photo-sharing platform for about eight hours on Monday and led to complaints of accounts being suspended.

"We've resolved this bug now — it was causing people in different parts of the world to have issues accessing their accounts and caused a temporary change for some in number of followers," Meta Platforms Inc.-owned Instagram said in a tweet at 6 p.m. ET on Monday.

The company did not give any explanation for the issue.

The outage in some cases led to the suspension of users' Instagram accounts, with some receiving a message that their account "doesn't follow our community guidelines." Multiple users tweeted that the application had asked for their email and phone number to get the suspended account to work again.

Some users reported seeing a message that they were locked out, but were still able to scroll through their feeds. Others reported that their number of followers had dropped, presumably because those accounts were locked.

Earlier Monday, some Instagram users reported that they had regained access to their accounts, only to find all of their content was gone. It was not clear Monday night whether their past content had been restored.

It remained unclear whether the problem was an internal issue or whether the social media site had been hacked. 

Thousands of users were impacted throughout the day, according to outage-tracking website Downdetector, which collates status reports from a number of sources, including user-submitted errors on its platform. The outage may be affecting a much larger number of users than those who reported issues with the app.

Shares of Meta closed down 6.1 per cent amid a wider selloff in stock markets. 

With files from The Associated Press and CBC News

Add some “good” to your morning and evening.

A variety of newsletters you'll love, delivered straight to you.

Sign up now