Instagram has been filled in the last few hours by users with names as witty as “Dumb guy who reads it”, original as “I’m an asshole” or descriptive as “I like shit”. And it’s not bots or bugs or anyone else who’s been hacked into the account: they’ve been victims of their own innocence.

There is a hoax circulating on the net that describes an alleged bug in Instagram whereby anyone can change the name to another user. The hoax in question is created in the Edit Self-Profile section. This is where you are supposed to go and perform a series of steps:

  1. Change our name to the @user of the one we want to modify the profile.
  2. Save the changes.
  3. Edit again the previous data, entering now what you want to appear as the final result
  4. Save the changes.

If the prank went as promised, our victim would display a name on Instagram that ranges from the simply funny to the aberrantly obscene. Surprisingly, however, where the change will be reflected is only in our own account.

And this is where the fun part really comes in – for the one who sent us the supposed joke – for we cannot reverse the changes. Instagram only lets you make two changes to this section every 14 days, and we have already exhausted them. We now have a different and, in all likelihood, not very nice name. It’s the rules of social networking and there’s nothing we can do to break that rule, so you can’t change it again until this time has passed.

However, the attempted prank may leave behind particularly bloody situations and you may not want the modified name to be reflected on your profile for two weeks. In view of this, there is only one subterfuge: temporarily deactivate the account. This option, designed for those who want to get away from the platform for a while but not permanently, can make up for the occasion.

Temporarily disabling the Instagram account will stop it from being displayed publicly. After 14 days, we can reactivate it and rename it back to the original one.


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