View private Instagram accounts
Did you know that in some cases it is possible to view messages from private Instagram accounts? We explain how you can find and view messages and we also offer you a custom search tool to facilitate your search.
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Why can you view messages from private accounts?
In the Instagram mobile application, you can find the following information about a “Private account”: “If your account is private, only people you have approved can see your photos and videos. This has no effect on your existing followers. “. This suggests that if you are switching your account to private mode, your messages and videos will no longer be visible to people you have not approved. However, this is not entirely true, as it appears to us as OSINT investigators that it is possible to view messages from private accounts on Instagram.
If you are switchting your account to “private”, it means that your messages and videos will only be visible to people you have approved. Other people who end up on your profile only see that your profile is protected (see image).
Even though your messages and videos are not available through your profile, your messages and videos can still be viewed through other locations . For example, if you’ve posted an Instagram post on Facebook or Twitter, your post can be found not only, but also viewed. And because each Instagram post contains unique properties (instagram.com/p/), you can search for these properties in conjunction with the name or user name of the person you’re looking for as an OSINT investigator.
How can you view messages from private accounts?
You can use the above tool to search for posts from your target, but you can also run this search yourself through Google*. To do this, proceed as follows:
STEP 1: navigate to www.google.nl;
STEP 2: type in the following: “instagram.com/p/” “name/user name target” (with quotation marks);
THAT’S IT: check out the results.
*: Please be aware that you are complying with the applicable laws and regulations in your investigation at all times.
Want to know more about how you can conduct investigations on Instagram accounts? Or do you have any additions to this article? Let us know! Also check out our Instagram search tool or register for one of our OSINT training events.