Instagram is a great way to stay in touch with friends and family, to follow your favorite business, and more. However, by default, your Instagram account is public, and your profile and all of your posts can be seen by everyone, even people without an Instagram account. If you’re not comfortable with this, thankfully, Instagram makes it easy to switch your account to be private, which means that only followers you approve can see what you share, your followers, and following lists.
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Steps to Make Instagram Account Private
- Launch the Instagram app on your iPhone, iPad or Android device.
- Tap your Instagram profile icon at the bottom of the screen to open the Profile screen.
- Tap the “Settings” icon at the top of the screen to view the settings screen.
- Tap “Privacy” in this menu.
- Find the Account Privacy section at the top of this menu, and then tap to toggle on “Private Account.” A window appears at the bottom of the screen asking if you want to switch your Instagram account to be a private account.
- Tap “Switch to Private.” Going forward your Instagram account will be private, and only followers who you approve can see what you share, your followers, and following lists.
Reasons You Should Make Your Instagram Account Private
Now that you know how to make your Instagram account private, let’s look at the reasons why you may want to:
- Privacy: Even in the universe of people your friends with on Instagram, you may not want all of them to see every little thing you share. Changing your Instagram account to be private lets you control who can see your posts and stories. Having control over who can see specific posts is a great way to increase your online safety.
- Protecting Personal Relationships: Preventing specific people from seeing your account, or seeing specific posts you make on your Instagram account, can save relationships and friendships. You likely don’t agree with your friends and family about everything, and some people have very strong views about specific things. If you know someone you care about is going to get worked up over a post you’re going to make and it’s likely to result in a heated discussion, the right move may be to prevent that person from being able to see that post.
- Avoiding Unwanted Attention: Not everyone wants to get noticed on Instagram. If you’re not looking for internet fame and you just want your Instagram account to be a personal space for your friends and family, then switching your account is a great option for not risking your posts getting unwanted attention.
Reasons to Make Your Instagram Account Public
Now let’s look at the reasons why you may want to keep your Instagram account public:
- Increased Visibility: If you are seeking internet fame and fortune, you can’t get discovered if you’re not out there. Your Instagram account has to be public for more people to discover it.
- Professional Opportunities: A lot of people use Instagram as a tool for promoting a brand or a business. Again, if your goal is to get noticed, be discoverable and engage people, you can’t do that if they can’t find you. Making your Instagram account public gives you the greatest opportunity to reach the largest possible audience and maximize your opportunities.
- Connecting with Others: A big part of Instagram is making connections, either with people who are interested in you or who are interested in your business. It’s incredibly difficult to use Instagram as a networking tool if your account is private.