Instagram icon in trashcan. Learn how to permanently delete Instagram.

How to permanently delete your Instagram account

If you’re reading this, you’re likely one of the 1 billion monthly users of Instagram. While it’s fun to share the occasional food pic or a snap from your latest vacation, posting photos online inevitably entails tradeoffs when it comes to internet privacy. If you’re now reconsidering, follow this guide to permanently delete your Instagram account.

Note: When you delete your account, you will lose your profile and any photos, videos, comments, likes, and followers associated with that account. You cannot reactivate your account, so those of you looking for a temporary break can temporarily disable your Instagram account instead.

Jump to…

Instagram’s privacy policy
How to temporarily disable your Instagram account
How to permanently delete your Instagram account
Do more to protect your internet privacy

Instagram’s privacy policy

Have you ever wondered how private Instagram is? Does it collect any other information about you besides the photos you post?

These are the types of information Instagram collects about you:

  • Basic account information: Your name, phone number, username, password, and email address.
  • Content information: Any photos, comments, and other content you post on Instagram.
  • Communications information: Any communications between you and Instagram, which may include service-related emails and account notices.
  • Contact information: If you use Instagram’s “Find friends” feature, Instagram will look through your contact list and your social media accounts to recommend other Instagram users you might know.
  • Device information: Instagram can use “device identifiers” to learn about the type of device you use to access its service.
  • Usage information: Instagram can use cookies and similar technologies to monitor how you use its service.

How does Instagram use my information?

After collecting your information, Instagram may use it in the following ways:

  • Advertising: Instagram will use the information gathered about you to show you targeted marking communications and promotions.
  • Sharing with third parties: Instagram is owned by Facebook and works with a range of third parties, including advertising partners, so some of your data may be shared with them. Instagram may also be requested by legal authorities to submit information to aid in an investigation.
  • Personalize your experience: Based on your interactions on Instagram, Instagram may suggest users for you to follow or suggest you as a user for others to follow.
  • Product testing: Instagram may use the information it collects from you to help develop new products and services.

Is Instagram safe to use?

In a word, yes. Just remember you are the one who ultimately decides what gets shared online. So stay vigilant, brush up on Instragram’s privacy policy, and have fun!

Back to top

How to temporarily disable your Instagram account

Step 1: Log in to your Instagram account. Make sure you do this from the website because you cannot disable your account from the app.

Instagram log-in page with Log in button highlighted.

Step 2: In the top-right corner of the screen, click or tap on the My Profile icon (Instagram's my account icon).

Step 3: In the middle of your profile, click Edit Profile.

Step 4: At the bottom of the profile edits screen, click Temporarily disable my account.

Instagram profile page with Temporarily disable my account button highlighted.

Back to top

How to permanently delete your Instagram account

Step 1: Access the delete Instagram account page here. You will need to log in to your Instagram account first. Please make sure you are logging in via the web and not the app.

Instagram log-in page with Log in button highlighted.


Step 2: Next to Why are you deleting your account?, select the reason for deleting your Instagram account from the options in the dropdown.

Delete Your Account screen with dropdown of reasons highlighted.


Step 3: Enter your password, then click or tap Permanently delete my account.

Confirmation screen with Permanently delete my account button highlighted.

Back to top

Do more to protect your internet privacy

Now if you REALLY want to step up your internet privacy game, here are more steps you can take.

  1. Use ExpressVPN. While “pausing” Google Web & App History prevents Google from collecting data about you, it doesn’t prevent your ISP from tracking what you’re doing online and potentially sharing it with corporations and governments. To hide your online activity from your ISP, use a VPN like ExpressVPN.
  2. Use Tor Browser. Tor hides your location and online activities from anybody doing network surveillance or traffic analysis, so your internet activity is difficult to trace back to you. It’s one of your best bets for maintaining anonymity online. To maximize the effectiveness of Tor, be sure to read these tips: Want Tor to really work?

Safe browsing, everyone!

Back to top

Want more help with de-cluttering your online life? Check out ExpressVPN’s guides on:

> Deleting Chrome extensions

> Deleting Dropbox

> Deleting your Facebook account

> Deleting Facebook Messenger

> Deleting Find My iPhone, Find My iPad, and Find my Mac

Deleting your Gmail account

> Deleting your Google history

> Deleting your Google photos

> Deleting your hard drive browsing history

> Deleting your Internet Explorer history

> Deleting your Pokémon Go account

> Deleting Safari

Deleting your Snapchat account

> Deleting your Tinder account

> Deleting your Twitter account

> Deleting WhatsApp Messenger

> Deleting your Yahoo Mail account