How to make your Instagram profile private

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All new Instagram accounts are publicly visible by default. But as soon as you create one, you can make it private. This way, your posts will only be visible to followers you approve.

Switching from a public account to a private account won’t take you more than a few minutes. Here’s what you need to do.

Make your profile private

Only personal accounts can be set as private. If you have a business account on Instagram, you’ll need to customize it.

On your Android or iOS Instagram app:

  1. Open your Instagram app and go to profile.
  2. Open the main menu and go to settings
  3. Then go to Privacy and select Account Privacy.
  4. Find the Private account option and tap next to it.

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If you’re accessing Instagram from a web browser:

  1. On Instagram.com, click the profile icon.
  2. Click the settings icon.
  3. Go to Privacy and security > Account privacy.
  4. Check the Private account box.

If you want to block people from following you, you can easily remove them from your followers list:

  1. Go to your profile > Followers.
  2. Find the people you want to remove and click Remove next to their name.
  3. Confirm by clicking Delete again.

People you’ve deleted won’t receive a notification that you’ve deleted them.

How to use your private account

Some of your private messages may still be visible to others if you share them on other social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. To prevent your content from becoming publicly visible on these networks, change the privacy settings on each network you use to share your Instagram photos.

People who would like to follow you will be able to send you follow requests. You will see these requests when you tap the heart icon. You can approve or ignore follow requests. Once you accept a request, that person can see your content, including photos, videos, and followers/following lists.

Even people who don’t follow you can send you their content (photos and videos) directly.

Disable “Last active” status

If you don’t want your followers to follow your activity, you can disable status visibility. If you’re using the Instagram app for Android or iOS, follow these steps:

  1. Open your Instagram app and go to profile.
  2. Open the main menu and go to settings.
  3. Then go to Privacy and select Activity Status.
  4. Check if Show activity status is enabled or disabled. Turn it off.

If you’re accessing Instagram from a web browser:

  1. On Instagram.com, click the profile icon.
  2. Click the settings icon.
  3. Go to Privacy & Security.
  4. Clear the Show activity status check box.

Note that when your activity status is hidden, it works both ways. If you turn off “Last Active”, you won’t be able to see when the people you follow were last active.

Hashtags, likes and privacy

When you set your profile to private, you will still be able to use hashtags. These posts will be selectively visible on hashtag pages. Your followers will be able to see them and they will be hidden from everyone.

Setting your profile to private will not prevent people from seeing your likes on public posts. When you like someone’s post, everyone who can see the post will also be able to see that you liked it and click on your username, but they’ll still need to ask for approval to view your profile content .

Mentions, comments, notifications and your privacy settings

If your profile is set to private and you mention someone who doesn’t follow you, they won’t receive a notification about it.

If you leave a comment on a photo or video uploaded by someone whose profile is set to public, anyone will be able to see the comment and click on your username, even if your profile is set to private.

If you use Instagram Direct to send content to a group and your profile is set to private, your posts, along with any associated comments and mentions, will only be visible to your approved followers.

Other privacy options on Instagram

You can prevent your followers from receiving suggestions to follow “similar accounts” and mutual friends by following these simple steps:

  1. Open your Instagram app or go to Instagram.com on your browser.
  2. Go to Profile > Edit Profile.
  3. Look for similar account suggestions, click next to disable them, then click Submit.

Once you turn off account suggestions, Instagram will stop suggesting your followers to follow other people. However, this will also prevent your profile from appearing as a suggestion on other people’s profiles.

Your images may appear on Google search. This happens if you have allowed a web reader to access your profile and pictures. In addition to setting your profile to private, you can remove your images from Google Search by revoking access to the third-party website.

To prevent your contacts from finding you on Instagram, you can disconnect your phone number in a few steps. On your mobile device:

  1. Open Instagram and go to the menu.
  2. Go to Settings, choose Contact Settings.
  3. Look for the Connect contact option and turn it off.

On a computer:

  1. Go to Instagram.com.
  2. Enter your profile and go to Edit profile.
  3. Choose Manage Contacts.
  4. Find synced contacts and delete them.

Public or private

Setting your profile to private has many benefits as it protects your privacy. But it also has its limits. It is indeed difficult to promote your content with a private profile.

Is your profile public or private? Which option suits you best? Let us know in the comments section below.

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