Originally published October 15, 2015
I wrote this post a few years ago, when there was no built-in tool to back up your Instagram account.
When I published my post, I shared three third-party tools you could use to download your Instagram photos.
No more need to use a third-party solution to back up your Instagram account. Wonderful!
Now all Instagram users have a tool to download their info, including
- Archived Stories (posted after December 2017)
- Usernames of your followers and who you follow
- Direct messages
About Instagram’s Data Download Tool
The new Data Download tool is available this week, via your Instagram profile.
You can only access it now on the Instagram website.
According to the TechCrunch story,
access via iOS and Android is still rolling out.
Back Up Instagram with the Data Download Tool
To use the Data Download tool, log into Instagram on their website. Visit your profile.
There are several ways to access your profile.
I selected my username when I logged in on the web and was taken to my account profile screen.
Select Edit Profile.
On the Profile page, select Privacy and Security
On the Privacy and Security page, scroll down to the bottom of the page for the Data Download option.
Select the Request download link and a page will display with the message that the download may take up to 48 hours to create.
My download was faster than I expected, I received a message that my download was complete from Instagram in less than an hour.
For reference, I have just over 2,000 posts on Instagram and I haven’t posted any Stories.
The message read:
Here is the file you requested with the photos, comments, profile information and other data you’ve shared on Instagram as [your username].
This link will only work for the next four days. Because it may contain personal information, be sure to keep the link private and only download the archive to your own computer.
Instagram Download Files
Once I visited the download link, I discovered I needed to download three zip files.
The download files were file sizes of 241M, 88M, and 214K. You’ll need to unzip the files to access your Instagram content.
Note: Comments, connections, likes, contacts, messages, profile, searches, and settings are saved in JSON format.
I’m glad to finally have a built-in tool for downloading my Instagram photos. I found their process straightforward.
You’ll want to pay attention to Instagram’s warning that your download has personal information that you’ll want to safeguard.
Have you downloaded your Instagram account? Did it take very long? Share your experience in the comments.