Facebook Begins Legal Action Against Instagram Clone Sites

Facebook brought forth legal action against and Istanbul software developer, who basically scrapes user data from Instagram, and republishes the content on these alternate platforms. Income is generated for the developer by running ads on these clone sites.

Here’s what Facebook said:

“Today we filed a lawsuit in the US against Ensar Sahinturk for scraping people’s publicly-visible information from Instagram in order to create a network of clone sites. A clone site is a website that copies and displays Instagram or Facebook profiles, posts and other information without the users’ knowledge or consent. When this happens, people lose visibility and control of who is viewing their content and interacting with their account.”

Over 100,000 Instagram accounts were scrapped using automation software without permission from Instagram. Facebook said that the culprit violated Facebook’s Terms of Service.

Facebook said that he “then published this data on a network of clone sites, where anyone could enter an Instagram username to view Instagram user profiles, pictures, videos, stories, hashtags and locations.”

Somehow, this seems like a breach of privacy for all the affected Instagram account holders.

Facebook even sent cease and desist letters, and even “disabled the defendant’s Instagram and Facebook accounts.” But since it looks like Sahinturk didn’t stop what he was doing, Facebook followed through with a suit against him.

Source – Facebook Blog and Social Media Today

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