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Instagram investigates user data mishandling by Chtrbox

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

said Tuesday it is investigating whether a third party improperly stored its user data, in violation of its policies, amid reports of information of millions of users being available online allegedly in an unsecured database.

Reports suggest that the database hosted on - which had over 49 million records - containing information of millions of influencers, celebrities and brand accounts - was found online. The database was allegedly traced back to Mumbai-based marketing firm

"We are investigating whether a third party improperly stored data, in violation of our policies. It's also not clear whether the phone numbers and emails in Chtrbox's database came from Instagram," an Instagram said in an emailed statement.

The further stated that "regardless, the possibility of third parties mishandling user data is something we take seriously, which is why we're quickly working to understand what happened".

Emails sent to

did not elicit a response.

On its website, says over "52 leading brands and their agencies leverage its across the marketing cycle for research, sampling, content creation and distribution, driving engagement and conversions, at scale".

According to reports, apart from public data (like bio, profile picture and number of followers), the database also allegedly contained users' private contact information such as email address and phone number.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, May 21 2019. 19:41 IST