How to Delete or Deactivate Your Instagram Account

  • 31/Jul/2020
  • 11:23 am
  • Blog admin

Instagram has been a huge success. This is as true for Mark and his Facebook team, as it is for consumers. As of April 2020, Statista estimates that Instagram has over a billion active users. This places it as the sixth most used social media platform in the world.

As you scroll through the platform, it's super easy to get sucked in. You keep scrolling and scrolling, watching an endless stream of content roll through your screen. For some, it's easy to disconnect when needed. For others, to disconnect, you must take your leave.

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On the other hand, you may also be like us, super concerned about your privacy and security. If that's the case, then Instagram's many security flaws can be terrifying. Leaked passwords, personal data leaks, location tracking, and in-app tracking and data sharing all pose a threat to your privacy, exposing you to potentially harmful circumstances.

Indeed, Instagram keeps track of your every click, every share, save, and download. This data is sold to ad agencies for ad targeting. But that's not the only worry. Until recently, other users who follow you were able to see your interactions on virtually every post. And while that's a little limited today, they simply need to stumble across posts you've interacted with to find your interactions.

If you wish to improve your online privacy, then deleting your Instagram account is a critical step. In this guid, you'd be finding out the difference between deactivating and deleting your Instagram account. You'd also learn how to delete your Instagram account, and how to deactivate it if you please.

Deleting vs Deactivating your Instagram Account

Instagram both lets you deactivate and delete your account. The decision on whether to delete or deactivate will depend on your needs and preferences.

Deleting your Instagram account is to be done when you decide you're never returning to Instagram. This is a permanent action that forever wipes out your profile, videos and photos, likes, comments, and followers. When you delete your Instagram account, it can never be recovered again. Interestingly, your username will also be gone for good. Should you choose to return, you won't be able to reuse that username.

Deactivating your Instagram account is more of a temporary measure. This is a step taken when you simply want to take a break from Instagram. Whilst deactivated, your Instagram profile will disappear from the view of other users. Your likes, followers, photos, videos and comments, will also be hidden from view. This step allows you return again with your profile in tact. All you'd need do is log back into your account, and resume.

How to Permanently Delete your Instagram Account

Deleting your Instagram account is a huge step. If you've thought this through and decided you want to go ahead with deleting your Instagram account, we'd advice you first download a copy of your Insta data. This data includes your profile information, posts, and comments.

Note: You'd find a short guide for downloading your personal data below.

Once your data is safely downloaded, it's time to permanently delete your Instagram account. To do that, you should take the following steps:

Step 01: On your mobile or PC, go to the Instagram website and log into your account. Keep in mind that you can't delete your Instagram account using the phone app.

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Step 02: Once logged in, head over to the Instagram Delete Your Account page.

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Step 03: On the Instagram account deletion page, you'd be asked why you're deleting your account. Select a suitable reason from the dropdown menu, or select "Something else" if you prefer not to say.

Step 04: Enter yourpassword when prompted and select 'Permanently delete my account'.

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Step 05: Your Instagram account is gone forever.

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How to Temporarily Disable your Instagram Account

Perhaps you aren't ready just yet to disable your account and simply want to take a break. In that case, deactivating your account would serve perfectly. To temporarily deactivate your Instagram account, take the following steps:

Step 01: On your mobile or PC, go to the Instagram website and log into your account.

Step 02: Click the human icon to head over to your personal profile page.

Step 03: Click 'Edit Profile', and at the bottom of the page, select 'Temporarily disable my account' .

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Step 04: You'd see a prompt asking 'Why are you disabling your account?', select your most preferred reason from the dropdown.

Step 05: Enter your password when prompted and click 'Temporarily disable account'.

Step 06: Your account will be deactivated and invisible to other users..

How to Download your Instagram Data

if you've chosen to disable your Instagram account, you may wish to get a copy of all of your personal data on Instagram before it is deleted for good. Once your account is deleted, this data can no longer be retrieved. To get hold of a copy of your personal data from Instagram:

Step 01: Go to your Instagram account on your browser and head over to settings.

Step 02: Click 'Privacy and Security' > 'Request Download'.

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Step 03: Enter your email address. This is where the data will be sent so ensure it's a working mail.

Step 04: Enter your password when prompted.

Step 05: You'd receive a mail with a link to your personal data, titled 'Your Instagram Data'. Select 'Download Data' to get a copy of the data.

Alternatively...

Step 01: On your mobile app, go to your profile

Step 02: Click the "three dashes" by the top right hand corner

Step 03: Select 'Settings' > 'Security' > 'Download data' > 'Request Download' .

Step 04: Enter your password when prompted to complete the process.

Step 05: Download the data when it arrives in your mail.

Other Ways to Improve your Instagram Privacy

Instagram has a number of options that allow you control just how much information you're leting out to the world. By properly identifying and using these options, you take some steps towards a more private social media experience.

Your first real step to Instagram privacy, though, lies squarely with you. Do NOT post critical personal details on Instagram for any reason. Your tax documents, financial forms, ID cards, car plate number, credit cards, boarding passes, etc. have no place on Instagram.

That said, there are other important steps that can boost your privacy a notch:

1. Turn off your activity status

Your activity status lets other users know when you're active on the app. This, to them, will appear a great time to chat you up. But that's not always the case. If you'd rather scroll through Instagram anonymously, you'd need to turn off this feature by:

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Step 01: Click the icon to your profile and tap the lined button at the top right hand corner.

Step 02: Go to 'Settings' > 'Privacy and Security' > 'Show Activity Status'.

Step 03: Toggle the option off.

2. Enable two-factor authentication

Hackers are constantly looking to penetrate your account. They constantly look for loopholes to get into your account, but you can make their task so much more difficult. Enabling two-factor authentication for your account means it'll take more than just your username and password to break into your account.

To enable two-factor authentication on your account:

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Step 01: Go to your profile and click the lined button at the top right hand corner.

Step 02: Click 'Settings' > 'Privacy and Security' > 'Two-Factor Authentication'.

Step 03: Toggle the 'Require Security Code' button to begin receiving one-time passwords before any login.

3. Make your account private

Instagram is an open book. Here, you don't necessarily need to follow a person or be friends with them before you can view their posts. This means your posts are open to strangers and friends alike. But you can change this by locking your account.

Locking your account and making it private will allow only those whom you approve as followers to view your profile and posts. To make your account private:

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Step 01: Go to your profile and click the lined button at the top right hand corner.

Step 02: Click 'Settings' > 'Privacy and Security' > 'Private Account'.

Step 03: Toggle the option on to lock your account.

4. Turn off your location

Yes, Instagram records your location. It uses this data alongside others to determine ads most suitable to your person. But you're entirely free to disable this setting to improve your privacy. You can control Instagram's location tracking abilities directly from your device.

To turn off your location on an Apple device:

Step 01: Open Settings and scroll down to 'Privacy'

Step 02: In 'Privacy', open 'Location Services'

Step 03: Look for Instagram in the list of apps and toggle off its location access.

To turn off your location on Android:

Step 01: Open Settings and scroll down to 'Privacy'

Step 02: Select 'Privacy' > 'Permission manager' > 'Location'

Step 03: Search out Instagram on the list of apps that comes up; click and select your desired option.

Conclusion

There are so many ways to fall victim to cybercriminals these days. Staying safe on social media is an absolute necessity. To ensure you aren't inadvertently releasing private data into the wrong hands, you want to do everything in your power to protect your privacy.

For improved privacy on Instagram's sister app Facebook, check out this guide on how to delete or deactivate your Facebook account. If we talk about access of Instagram account, very few countries like CHINA has banned the Instagram app use for citizens, So in case, you are travelling there, you can use the best VPN for China to avoid the restricted App use. You can find the VPNs list by visiting our VPN pages.