Facebook to settle feud with New Zealand company accused of selling fake likes

Cal Jeffrey

TS Evangelist
Staff member

Late last year, Instagram began cracking down on “inauthentic activity.” This included fraudulent accounts and bots the provided users with fake likes.

The Verge reports that in April of this year, Instagram owner Facebook filed a lawsuit against New Zealand company Social Media Series Limited (SMSL). The suit alleges that the firm sold automated engagement bots to Instagram influencers. The suit asked for undisclosed “damages for manipulating the Instagram platform.”

In a legal brief filed on Wednesday, Facebook and SMSL asked the court to halt proceedings as the two companies settled the matter. The New Zealand outfit was looking at charges, including breach of contract, unjust enrichment, and violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Facebook claimed that the company operated under various names and sold “millions of automated likes” for a fee.

It is no wonder that SMSL wishes to settle out of court.

The brief does not list the terms of the agreement other than the issuance of a stipulated injunction. The injunction should be filed within the next two weeks.

The SMSL lawsuit is not the only legal action the social media has brought to the courts. The Verge noted that in March of this year, the company filed similar suits against four Chinese companies that were also allegedly selling fake Facebook and Instagram accounts. Those cases are still pending.

Image credit: Cryptographer via Shutterstock

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