Delete your personal data from Instagram
Rightly, Champions of Data, empowers you to easily and securely manage your personal online data.
In 2021, Instagram topped a list of “invasive” apps that collect and share users’ data. It’s a hub for collecting personal data, including browsing history, location, banking details, contact details and so on, that can be shared with others unknown to you.
On this page we’ll explain why it’s a good idea to get your data deleted from Instagram and how to go about it. Or if you just want to get started, click the Start Now button which will take you directly to our Rightly Protect service, enabling you to find out who has your data and get it deleted, quickly and for free.
Can I delete my data from Instagram?
Yes you can! You have the right to ask any company to delete all the data they hold on you and they have to comply within 30 days. This right flows from GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) legislation and if companies don’t comply without a valid reason, they can be in trouble.
How do I delete data from Instagram?
The easiest way to get your data deleted from social media companies like Instagram is to use our Rightly Protect service. In addition to picking Instagram and asking them to erase your data, you can use Rightly Protect to analyse your email inbox to figure out all the companies that have your data. With Rightly Protect you can ask all of them to delete the data they hold on you in one click. Because many companies have your data, even companies you’ve never heard of, and it often runs into hundreds or even thousands of organisations putting your data at risk.
How long until Instagram responds?
Instagram should reply within one calendar month. If they have genuine reasons that they need extra time to consider your request, they can take up to an extra two months - but they should let you know within one month that they need more time and the reasons why. If you’re unhappy with how they respond, you can make a complaint to Instagram and then if you’re still unhappy, you can complain to the ICO (Information Commissioner’s office).
Does Instagram actually delete your data?
Yes, it’s a legal requirement. After one calendar month has passed since your account deletion request, your account and all of your information will be permanently erased by Instagram, and you will not be able to retrieve
What type of data does Instagram store on me?
Instagram can collect a wide range of data from registered users:
● Names and passwords of account holders
● Captured content, such as photos and videos
● Data that links users to the photos they took, tagged or liked
● Text message history, address book contacts or other similar personal information
● Metadata on how people use the Instagram mobile app
● Transactional data from Meta owned products and services, including Facebook
● Facial recognition data
● Data on which devices are linked to which accounts
● Geolocational data
● Bank details
● Business information such as company and VAT numbers
What does Instagram do with my data?
Instagram’s main motive for building a data set around each user is to personalise the ads that show up on your feed. Ad targeting changes are made based on a lot of different data: your personal account info, your usage patterns, your location, and more.
But it’s not just your data that shapes your ad feed: Instagram compiles the same kinds of data from a variety of users and uses it to optimise when and where it shows you certain ads.
Instagram also uses facial recognition data to automatically recognise when you appear in photos.
The additional data that Instagram collects helps the company to perform strategic market research, communicate directly with users, and counter suspected misuse.
Why delete my data from Instagram?
In 2019 Instagram suffered a data breach exposing 49 million users’ sensitive data, including biodata, profile picture, location and contact information. The most recent Instagram data breach happened in January 2021, when a database of account information exposed 214 million social media accounts.
If you’re not using Instagram any more, or think a fresh profile would be a good thing, you can instruct Instagram to delete all the data they have about you and so prevent it from being stolen as a result of a data breach.