SOLVED: ‘Account Locked Unusual/Suspicious Activity‘ on Twitter

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Seeing the message "Your Twitter account has been locked" can stop you in your tracks, especially if you have no idea why. With Twitter constantly improving its spam detection algorithms, an increasing number of accounts are getting temporarily restricted for "unusual activity" — even if they weren‘t doing anything shady!

Not to worry – with the right approach, you can get your account unlocked and back up running smoothly. In this comprehensive 2800+ word guide, we‘ll give you insider tips to resolve Twitter lockouts and avoid them for good.

Why You‘re Seeing "Account Locked" Warnings

Over the past few years, Twitter has cracked down hard on fake accounts and inorganic follower growth in order to protect advertising revenues. Their improved algorithms have gotten much better at detecting bot activity and suspicious usage patterns.

According to Twitter‘s latest transparency report, the company challenged over 418 million accounts for potential spam in the second half of 2021. That‘s a 26% increase compared to the year before!

Some of the "unusual activity" that could trigger an account lockout includes:

  • Buying followers or likes in bulk to artificially inflate popularity
  • Using bots or automated software to mass-like, follow, or comment
  • Posting duplicate or spammy content repeatedly
  • Sending too many identical DMs in a short period

You may also get flagged for lockout if multiple users report your account as spam or abusive. The threshold for temporary account restrictions has become much lower in response to Twitter‘s aggressive anti-spam stance. Even well-intentioned power users sometimes get caught as collateral damage.

Suspicious Activity vs Normal Use on Twitter:

Suspicious Activity Normal Activity
Buying bulk followers Gaining followers organically
Using auto-like bots Manually liking content
Posting duplicate spam Posting unique content
Mass DMing Individual DMs

So in summary, if Twitter detects patterns of automation and inauthentic behavior, you‘re at risk of the bot crackdown. But normal high-volume usage in itself doesn‘t mean your account will get restricted.

Confirming You‘re Not at Risk of a Permanent Ban

The good news is you won‘t get permanently banned simply for overdoing normal activities like following or liking too aggressively. These types of blocks are usually temporary.

However, you do risk a permanent ban if you:

  • Purchase fake followers
  • Use follower growth bots/software
  • Download apps promising free followers

So if you‘ve used these shady tactics, cease immediately! According to Twitter, 9.8 million spam accounts were purged just in Q2 2022. You do not want to become part of this statistic.

Stick to organic growth strategies centered around engagement with real humans instead. This is a marathon, not a sprint – patience and persistence pays off in the long run.

Tips to Get Your Account Unlocked Quickly

If you find your account temporarily locked, here are some tried and true troubleshooting tips to regain access quickly:

1. Stop Using Bots or Software

If you‘ve been using any kind of bot or automation software for Twitter, stop immediately. These kinds of shortcuts are easy for Twitter to detect through usage patterns.

Reach out to the service provider you‘ve been using and request they cease any automated interactions. Explain you‘ve been locked out. This is the only way forward.

2. Take a Break From Twitter Activity

The best course after a lockout is to take a complete break from Twitter activity for at least 72 hours, or even up to a week. This gives Twitter‘s algorithm time to reset and stop expecting automation.

Avoid following, liking, commenting or posting during the break. Just read, listen and observe. It‘s an opportunity to learn what content resonates before jumping back in.

3. Switch to Mobile Data Instead of WiFi

When you‘re ready to start using Twitter again, try switching to mobile data instead of your home or work WiFi. The algorithm may have flagged your IP address, so this tricks it into thinking you‘re accessing from a new location.

If you‘re on desktop, enable phone hotspot mode for your computer. If mobile, switch off WiFi and onto cellular data. This phone link-up also helps validate you as a real user…

Speaking of phones, if you haven‘t connected your Twitter account to a real phone number yet, now is the time. This adds more credibility that there‘s a real human behind the account.

Twitter is well aware that spammers used to exploit burner numbers. So you‘ll need to use a number you can receive SMS messages on. It‘s an extra step, but worth it to reinforce legitimacy.

5. Revoke App Permissions

Take a few minutes to review all the apps you‘ve given permission to access your Twitter account. Revoke access to any you don‘t recognize or those performing actions on your behalf unexpectedly.

You want to restrict apps strictly to those you actively use to avoid activities running without your knowledge. Less is more when it comes to permissions.

6. Avoid Rapid Follow/Like Sprees

When you resume normal Twitter activity, beware of following or liking too many accounts in a short span of time. It can trigger alarms just like before. Space out your actions and don‘t cram.

Set a reasonable limit like 50 follows per hour. Use a timer app to pace yourself. Slow and steady activity that appears human will avoid rousing suspicion.

7. Vet Growth Services Carefully

If you plan to use a third-party service for managing Twitter growth, research options extensively before choosing. Many promise the world, but cut corners with bots under the hood…

Make sure to select an organic growth service that clearly explains their hands-on, human-led approach. Real services may be pricier, but provide long-term, sustainable results.

Preventing Future "Unusual Activity" Lockouts

Once you regain access to your account, applying the following best practices will help you avoid pesky "account locked" messages surfacing again:

1. Pace Yourself

Don‘t follow, like or tweet too aggressively. Moderation is the name of the game. Spacing out your actions makes them appear more human and organic.

Set limits, use a timer, and take intermittent breaks. Twitter is a marathon, not a sprint. With patience, you‘ll build your foundation sustainably.

2. Avoid Spam Techniques

Posting duplicate content, using hashtag spam, or mindlessly mass engaging will put your account at risk. Vary your content, target followers selectively, and focus on quality over quantity.

Twitter‘s algorithms are always improving at flagging spam tactics. So avoid anything that looks remotely shady. You want to appear as authentic as possible.

3. Select Services Wisely

As mentioned before, thoroughly vet any growth services to ensure they rely on manual efforts alone. If something seems too good to be true, like "5000 followers in a week," it probably is.

Real growth takes time. Only use providers with proven experience and transparency around how they operate. It protects your reputation.

If you haven‘t already, add a phone number to reinforce you‘re a real person behind the account. Burner numbers are prohibited, so you‘ll need one tied to your mobile device.

This extra validation goes a long way. Savvy spammers often operate without any phone linkage to enable disposable accounts. Don‘t make this mistake.

5. Limit App Permissions

Only allow access to apps you actually use regularly. Revoke any unnecessary permissions that could enable activities you‘re not aware of. It protects your account.

Review this list monthly to ensure it stays tight. Every app granted access increases potential for abuse. So keep them restricted and your usage patterns look more pure.

6. Post Unique, High-Quality Content

The more original, non-duplicated content you share, the more authentic your account appears to Twitter‘s algorithms. Invest time in creating valuable posts people want to see.

Likewise, don‘t just blindly retweet and quote others. Mix in your own commentary and insights. Twitter is cracking down on mindless content recycling accounts, so avoid looking like one.

The Path to Smooth Twitter Growth Starts Here

We hope these tips provide a helpful blueprint to get your account unlocked quickly if you find it unfairly restricted. More importantly, applying the advice consistently will help you avoid temporary lockouts in the first place.

Growing an audience in an organic, sustainable way takes time and dedication. But the payoff of meaningfully engaging with real humans instead of faceless bots is worth the investment.

While the occasional restriction can be frustrating, Twitter‘s aim to enhance authentic connections is admirable. By embracing their vision through prudent growth strategies, you‘ll be on the path to smooth organic growth in no time. Just stay persistent, patient, and proactive.


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.