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Hackers Exploited Instagram Bug to Get Celebrity Phone Numbers, Emails

At least one hacker exploited an Instagram bug to get celebrity phone numbers and email addresses, according to the company.
The Instagram logo on an iPhone
The Instagram logo on an iPhoneRolf Vennenbernd / dpa via AP

At least one hacker was able to steal phone numbers and email addresses attached to celebrity accounts by exploiting a glitch in Instagram's system, according to the Facebook-owned photo sharing company.

An Instagram representative said the bug has now been fixed and that the account holders who may have been affected were notified. The representative declined to say which accounts — or how many — were compromised.

The Instagram logo on an iPhone
The Instagram logo on an iPhoneRolf Vennenbernd / dpa via AP

“We recently discovered that one or more individuals obtained unlawful access to a number of high-profile Instagram users’ contact information — specifically email address and phone number — by exploiting a bug in an Instagram API,” the company said in a statement to Variety. Instagram did not immediately return NBC News' request for comment.

Related: Data Breach Exposes 700 Million Email Addresses — And Some Passwords

Instagram co-founder Mike Krieger said in a blog post Friday that "We quickly fixed the bug, and have been working with law enforcement on the matter. Although we cannot determine which specific accounts may have been impacted, we believe it was a low percentage of Instagram accounts."

While the bug has been fixed, it's a reminder of the importance of maintaining a strong password and turning on two-factor authentication. The extra step sends a code to the account holder's phone when they're logging on. Once they enter that code into Instagram, they'll be able to log in to their account.

Instagram's disclosure also comes the same week Selena Gomez, the most followed person on Instagram, apparently had her account compromised by someone who posted private photos of her ex-boyfriend, Justin Bieber. Her account was briefly taken down on Monday and then restored.