More than half of Justin Bieber’s followers on Twitter are fake, suggests a report which looked into social media profiles on the networking service.
Justin Bieber, 19, has the most followers in the world after overtaking Lady Gaga last year.
However, the research claims out of the singer’s 37.3 million followers, only 17.8 million are linked to real accounts.
The website Socialbakers found only 47% of Justin Bieber’s followers on Twitter were genuine fans.
The company spots fake accounts by looking at the number of followers and seeing if genuine tweets have been posted, rather than spam.
The data also considers fake accounts to continuously tweet buzz phrases such as “diet”, “make money” and “work from home”.
The findings mean Justin Bieber should theoretically fall back into second place behind Lady Gaga in the race for the most followers.
After calculating Lady Gaga’s potential share of fake followers, the report suggests she still has 19 million real ones compared with Justin Bieber’s 17 million.