How to delete your different social media accounts
Whether you are worried about the chance of another data breach compromising your personal information, or you’ve simply had enough of social media ruling your life, the thought of getting rid of your social media accounts might have crossed your mind. However, as social media outlets make money off your information, they often don’t want to let you go. Because of this, it is often complicated to actually erase your account.
To help you out, we take a look at how the process works across four of the most popular platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat.
- Log into Facebook
- Click the small upside-down triangle in the right corner
- Click ‘‘Settings’’
- Click ‘’Manage Account’’
- Click ‘’Deactivate your account’’ or ‘’Request account deletion’’
Once you complete the final step it is important to remember that at this point you have only submitted a request to delete the account. Facebook delays the deletion process for 30 days after you submit your request and will cancel your request if you log into your account during that time period. Therefore, to permanently delete your account it’s crucial that you don’t visit Facebook during this waiting period. After 90 days all data related to you should have been removed from Facebook’s servers.
To avoid losing all your photos you can also either manually save them all down onto your phone or laptop, or download your account.
To manually save a photo on your mobile, hold down on the photo until a list of options pop up. Here, there should be an option that says, ‘save the photo’. This will save the phone into your mobile camera roll. If you are doing this on your laptop, click on the photo and then go to the bottom of the picture where there should be an ‘options’ button. If you click on options, you should then see another button to ‘download’ the photo. This saves the photo onto your hard drive.
To download your account, go into Settings> General Account Settings > Download a copy of your Facebook data and then click ‘Start My Archive.’ When your download is ready, Facebook will send you an email with a link to download. For added security, this link will expire after a few days.
- Log into Twitter
- Click your profile photo to open account settings
- Click ‘‘Settings and privacy’’
- At the bottom, click ‘‘Deactivate your account’’
- Confirm deactivation
- After a 30-day waiting period, during which you can log in and cancel the process, your account will be permanently deleted
Again, as with Facebook, if you want to download your Twitter data, you can do so by filling out the request form and going through the download process, before deleting the account. To download your archive, click your profile icon, go to Settings, then click on ‘Request your archive.’ Twitter will then send you an email with a download link that will give you a .zip file.
When it comes to deleting an Instagram account, the platform does not allow you to delete your account from the Instagram app, instead requiring that you log in to instagram.com from a web browser on your desktop or mobile device.
- Go to Instagram’s Delete Your Account page
- Select your reason for deleting Instagram permanently from the drop-down menu
- Re-enter your password and click ‘Permanently delete my account’
Alternatively, you can enter this link into your search bar https://instagram.com/accounts/remove/request/permanent/
Once you’ve deleted your account, you can’t sign up with that same username if you decide to create another Instagram account later on.
- Click your bitmoji or name in the top left corner
- Click the gear emoji to open settings
- Click ‘‘accounts portal’’
- Delete account
Once you’re on the delete account page, you will be asked to enter your username and password again. This is to confirm your identity and that the account really belongs to you. Much like Twitter, Snapchat does not eradicate your presence immediately, instead giving you a 30-day deactivation period. If you decide you want your account back during that period, logging in reactivates it. In that case everything will still be there, including your contacts, pictures, and your other data.
However, if you delete your account before saving any of your photos you will lose them completely. As with the other platforms, one way around this issue is to request access to your data or save all media to your phone’s gallery manually. To get your data from Snapchat follow these steps:
- Log into your account on accounts.snapchat.com
- Click ‘My Data’
- Click ‘Submit Request’ at the bottom of the page
- If you have verified an email address with Snapchat, we’ll send you an email with a link once your data is ready to download
- Follow the link in your email to download your data
- Click the link to download your data
You can also use this link: https://support.snapchat.com/en-US/article/download-my-data
As with Instagram, you cannot download your data using the Snapchat app and will instead have to do it on an internet browser.
Finally, we would recommend that once you have deactivated your accounts, you also revoke the app permissions on your phone and delete the app entirely.
We hope this was helpful and that you are able to remove your presence on social media, should you wish to do so. If you found this post useful why not check out some of our others?