A story that can crash your Instagram or we can say it can kill your phone. It doesn’t sound right, Does it? Well, it is true. Instagram is one of the most celebrated apps at the moment with over 500 million daily active users globally. Unfortunately, success is often accompanied by a series of drawbacks that pose a threat to the apps from time to time. Our posts and Stories aren’t the only things that circulate on the app. There are trends, viral news, and other elements that can cause issues to you.
Going by the name @Pgtalal, tapping on the account’s Story Highlights and the next story will close your Instagram and crash your phone. Now, you might now be wondering what the scam is all about. For over a week, several people have been attempting to decipher the reasoning behind this viral phenomenon. However, it was hard to procure evidence on how this glitch worked as the popular user chose to maintain his silence over it.
What about it?
The Instagram account “@Pgtalal” has been going viral for a week now and this is not something that involves fun. Pgtalal, who is now popular, describes himself as a full stack developer and has over 70,000 Instagram followers. This individual also has a private Instagram account and a Tik-Tok account, none of which reveal any information 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.
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 eighteen digit number to be precise.
With the help from Ananay Arora, a security researcher at Arizona State University, US, they addressed the concerns of the netizens. He explained that the highlights included a combination of Instagram stickers that are quite large in size. Generally, stickers tend to have a height and width of 0 to 1 but the ones mentioned in Pgtalal’s stories were scaled to dimensions in quintillions, thereby forming a glitch. Arora also mentioned another glitch triggered by the malicious Instagram account that was programmed with “right-to-left characters rendered alongside some new line characters, reverse line feed character and some other special chars” that should be stripped by Instagram’s API.
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. High-powered Android phones that pack huge memory can deal with this huge sticker sizes. But most low-powered Android phones, and Apple devices that tend to have smaller RAM, can fail when rendering the Story.
What to do if your phone crashes?
If you’ve come across the trending Instagram subject and fallen for it by accident, don’t worry. You can still fix the problem and prevent your phone from crashing.
All you need to do is go to 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 is still unclear why this was created in the first place. However, one thing to keep in mind is that you can avoid it. . If you come across this or your friends ask you to visit the profile, just pass!