Instagram has today announced that it is “increasing access” for user accounts to be verified with a new process. The platform will also start supporting third-party apps for two-factor authentication, and more.

Detailed in a blog post today, the social media service shared three new tools that are meant to help “keep Instagram safe.”

First up, Instagram is opening up the process to get the blue verified account badge. In addition to users being required to adhere to Instagram’s ToS and community guidelines, those wanting to apply for verification must meet the following criteria:

  • Authentic: Your account must represent a real person, registered business or entity.
  • Unique: Your account must be the unique presence of the person or business it represents. Only one account per person or business may be verified, with exceptions for language-specific accounts. We don’t verify general interest accounts (example: @puppymemes).
  • Complete: Your account must be public and have a bio, profile photo and at least one post. Your profile can’t contain “add me” links to other social media services.
  • Notable: Your account must represent a well-known, highly searched for person, brand or entity. We review accounts that are featured in multiple news sources, and we don’t consider paid or promotional content as sources for review.

Starting to roll out now, you’ll find “Request Verification” under Settings just below “Switch to Business Profile.” Instagram also notes that there are no guarantees.

Submitting a request for verification does not guarantee that your account will be verified. Once your request has been reviewed, you will receive a notification confirming or declining your request in the notifications tab. Instagram will never request payment for verification or reach out to ask you to confirm your verification.

Additionally, Instagram has also started rolling out the option to use a third-party app for two-factor authentication. Follow the steps below to see if the change is live for you.

To use a third-party app to log into your Instagram account, go to your profile, tap the menu icon, select “Settings” at the bottom and then choose “Two-Factor Authentication.” Select “Authentication App” as your preferred form of authentication. If you already have an authentication app installed, we will automatically find the app and send a login code to it. Go to the app, retrieve the code and enter it on Instagram, and two-factor authentication will turn on automatically.

This particular change is good to see after hundreds of accounts were reportedly hacked earlier this month.

Lastly, the platform will start implementing an “About This Account” feature for users with large followings.

In the coming weeks, you will be able to see more information about accounts on Instagram that reach large audiences so you can evaluate the authenticity of the account. To learn more about an account, go to their Profile, tap the … menu and then select “About This Account.” There, you will see the date the account joined Instagram, the country where the account is located, accounts with shared followers, any username changes in the last year and any ads the account is currently running.

Affected users can review their about details starting in September, while Instagram will release the About This Account tool globally later on.

Instagram is a free download from the App Store.

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