Instagram is a great app for those who love to explore their creativity by taking beautiful pictures, but what if you don’t want just anyone viewing your snaps? Protecting yourself is extremely important on social media and Instagram privacy is no exception.

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Fortunately, you can take a few steps to ensure you can keep your profile and content secure.

Enable Two-Factor Authentication

Prevent anyone else having access to your Instagram account by enabling two-factor authentication. You’ll have to add your phone number for this to work, but once you do, you’ll need both your password and a one-time passcode to log into your account.

The password is sent directly to your phone when you’re trying to log in, so unless the person trying to log into your account has access to your phone, you should be safe.

To enable two-factor authentication, go to your profile tab on Instagram. From there, tap the three dots in the top-right corner to open the Options menu. Scroll down until you find Two-Factor Authentication. Tap on it and enable the Require Security Code option. Follow the instructions to add your phone number.

Manually approve photo tags

Don’t you just hate it when people assume they can tag and post images of you, you haven’t had the chance the see yet? To avoid this uncomfortable scenario, you should always hand-approve each tag, and not only on Instagram.

You can do so on Instagram by navigating to Options and taping on Photos of You. You’ll see there are two options: Add Automatically and Add Manually. Tap on the second one.

At the bottom, you’ll also notice the Hide Photos option which obviously lets you hide images you have already been tagged into. This option basically untags you from the pictures you’ve been tagged in, but be careful, if you change your mind in a few weeks and you want the pic to show on your profile again, you won’t be able to restore it. Yet, you will still remain tagged in the original post on your friend/follower’s page.

Keep people from seeing when you were last active

Instagram now lets you see when the followers you’ve been exchanging Direct Messages were last active. But what if you don’t want your ex or that annoying friend keeping tabs on your all the time?

Browse Instagram undisturbed by disabling the activity status option. To do that all you need to do is go Options, scroll down until you find the Show Activity Status option and toggle it off. Now you should be safe from prying eyes.

Hide Instagram Stories from specific people

Instagram lets you quickly upload content (photos or videos) that expires after a day. This way, besides posting normal images n Instagram, users can share what’s happening at the moment.

But what if you’d prefer it if your family members didn’t see your Stories? The good news is that you can hide your Stories from certain people.

Once again open the Options menu and scroll down until you find Story Settings. From here you can choose which people to hide the story from or set permissions for who can comment on your story (Everyone, People You Follow).

Don’t want other people sharing your Story? There’s an option to disable that under Story Settings, as well.

And things are bound to get even tighter, as Instagram is said to be testing a new feature that identifies users who take screenshots of individual Instagram Stories.

Turn off GPS Tagging

Keep stalkers in the dark, by avoiding checking-in certain photos. Make sure you’re not tempted to add that info by turning off Location permission for Instagram via the phone’s Settings>Apps>App permissions.

Most camera apps (including the stock one) will tag your photos with coordinates that show where they’ve been taken.  It’s a great way to organize photos from different trips, but it’s also an easy way for people to track your whereabouts.

So it’s a good idea to disable GPS tagging in your stock camera app. You can do this by going to Apps in your Settings menu and disabling the location permission for your camera app (the same route you took to disable it for Instagram).

Last resort

Make your Instagram account private

Value your privacy above anything else? You can make your Instagram account private. Just go to Options in your app and scroll down until you find the Private Account option and toggle it on.

Once enabled, only people you approve will be able to view your posts. This route has its inconveniences, for example, your follower numbers will be limited. But if you only use Instagram to connect with friends, it won’t bother you much.

There you have it, five ways to tighten Instagram privacy. If you’re not doing at least some of these for yourself, you should consider it.

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