Instagram is one of the most popular social media apps and it would be safe to say that an event not documented on the platform, is an event that never happened. But, our posts and Stories aren’t the only things that circulate on the app. There are trends, viral news, and well, elements that can cause issues to you. Also Read - Instagram testing a feature that will alert users of service outage
One such viral-going talk of the Gram is an account by the name “@Pgtalal.” It’s in the news because people visiting the Instagram profile and clicking on its Story Highlights are left with a crashed phone. Also Read - Instagram plans to roll out new tools to 'nudge' teens away from bad content
Now, you might be wondering what’s the whole scam about. Continue reading to know everything about this and what to do if you have already fallen victim to this. Also Read - Facebook and Instagram were down for few hours last night, second time in a week
What’s it about?
The Instagram account “@Pgtalal” has been going viral for a week now and this is not something that involves fun. The now-famous Pgtalal identifies himself as a full stack developer and has over 70,000 followers on Instagram. This person also has a private Instagram account and a TikTok account, both of which doesn’t reveal anything about him.
A video by popular YouTuber “Mrwhosetheboss” explains the whole situation. It is suggested that clicking on the Story Highlights will act differently on different phones. On Android, it will show a purple screen with confetti and a “Your love” song playing in the background. On iOS, a grey screen will appear with Arabic text on it. What’s worst is that you can long-tap on the Stories to keep them from playing, unlike the usual case with Instagram Stories. The curious case of Pgtalal has more to it: the person is even boasting the Story views and guess what? He’s just 14.
If you are intrigued and want to visit the profile, DO NOT tap on its Highlights section. It will end up making your smartphone unresponsive. iPhones tend to struggle, so do the mid-range/budget Android phones. High-end Android phones manage to stay fine.
This is probably because the Stories can’t do bad to phones with high RAM. Budget Android phones and iPhones tend to fall short in this department and hence, the effect.
Why phones are crashing?
After a deep dive into Pgtalal’s mysterious Stories that crash phones, Mrwhosetheboss “inspected” the malicious Instagram account and found that Pgtalal included two Instagram Stickers (A countdown and a poll) as part of his stories that are quite big in size. While such stickers tend to have a height and width somewhere between 0 and 1, Pgtalal’ stickers are way more than that: an eight-digit number to be precise.
The Instagrammer has used an HTTP Proxy for this huge sticker size, which allows him to see and modify things being posted before they reach the app’s servers. This way, he is able to change the size to an enormous figure.
The large size explains the Purple story on Android and Grey story on iOS, which are just a small part of the countdown and poll stickers, respectively. Also, the reason why you can’t pause the stories is that you are seeing the non-responsive part of the story.
But what to do if your phone crashed?
In case you have come across the trending Instagram topic and have mistakenly fallen for it, worry not. You can still fix the issue and save your crashing phone.
All you need to do is go the reboot way. Just press all the physical buttons on your smartphone for it to restart. iOS users can simply press the press/release the volume down button, then press/release the volume up button, and then long-press the power on/off button. Once the Apple logo appears on the screen, you’re safe!
However, it still remains unknown as to why this was created in the first place. But, one thing to note is that you should stay away from it. If you come across this or your friends ask you to visit the profile, just pass!