The crackdown on fake accounts, comments and likes comes when Instagram's parent company, Facebook, has been criticized for data breaches and the spread of inauthentic content. Facebook purchased Instagram for $1 billion in 2012.
Instagram said it would send a message to account holders who use such services notifying them that that any fake forms of engagement have been removed.
Now Instagram has vowed to stop fakers from artificially boosting their own popularity by buying phoney followers and using dodgy apps to make it look like they have a huge audience. With such access, the apps can then take over the account to generate artificial likes and followers on the platform.
"We've built machine learning tools to help identify accounts that use these services and remove the inauthentic activity". But it said they function by first convincing users to give up their username and password to their accounts.
Fake Instagram followers, likes, accounts to be removed
The company is expected to announce more measure to combat fake activity soon.
Purging inauthentic activity will be an ongoing effort for Instagram, so this is not just a one-and-done occurrence.
The move was pioneered by Twitter, which recently kicked out inauthentic accounts, resulting in declines in the number of followers for some users.
But even from a general user's perspective, clearing out the trash will be a welcome change to Instagram.
If you want people to love you on Instagram, it doesn't hurt to engage with other members of the community. Instagram has always been fighting unauthentic activity on its platform by taking out fake accounts, but it has not taken similar action against false likes before.