How to track down an Instagram account
Tracing an Instagram account is not as easy as it might seem at first glance; in fact, if you are here it is probably because, after several frustrating attempts, you failed to do so, and you are looking for help. Before delving into the subject, however, let’s start from an assumption: although Instagram was born as a “virtual space” in which to share photos with your circles of friends, in a short time it changed radically. In particular, this social network has undergone an important transformation over time, to the point of becoming a much more complex tool than when it was originally, so much so that today it is a platform in which figures of all kinds interact: in addition to simple users, we they are companies, content creators, influencers, social media managers and – unfortunately – also bots and malicious people (who carry out spam or other illegal activities).
It follows that it could be complicated to trace a particular IG profile if there was a need. So I will try to explain in a comprehensive way all the possibilities that are available to carry out this operation.
Who manages an Instagram account
First of all, let’s understand in detail what figures are on Instagram. As I mentioned before, they are really numerous and of various types; each of them exploits the tools and potential of this social network in a different way, based on factors such as objectives, targets and more.
In this case, we find:
- Users : not much has changed for them compared to the beginning, since they continue to publish their shots addressing mainly to friends and acquaintances, without too many pretensions;
- Companies: now almost all brands are present on Instagram, from multinationals to small local businesses; social networks are in fact a very useful tool to push your business and incentivize sales;
- Content creator and influencer : these are very “nuanced” categories, among which it is often difficult to make a clear and precise distinction; in general, these are users who have a rather large following and who share content to inspire their followers, encouraging them to purchase certain products (but not only) and making money from this type of activity;
- Bot and profiles of hackers or hackers : in this case there is not much to say, except that they are “digital presences” – commanded by one or more users – rather annoying, which unfortunately spoils the experience of each of us on Instagram.
Social media manager : these are professionals who manage the social accounts of other people and / or companies, taking care of their online presence in detail;
Why trace an Instagram account
What exactly is meant by “tracing back to an Instagram account” ? Using these words, we can mostly refer to two possibilities: that of recovering your profile (which you may not be able to access for various reasons) and that of tracing back to someone else’s account (to understand who there is behind). Proceed as follows.
If the Instagram account is yours
If the account you want to track is your own , it is probably because you have forgotten your password or your login e-mail and / or username. It could also be that the IG profile has been hacked or stolen, or that the smartphone has been changed and no longer able to log in due to two-factor authentication.
Whatever the reason, to try to solve it, I suggest you follow the instructions described in the tutorial where I explain how to recover an Instagram account.
If the Instagram account belongs to someone else
If you want to find an account managed by other people , the reasons could be even more numerous, both negative and positive.
Maybe you have noticed a profile that publishes incorrect content (which goes against the rules of Instagram and which is attributable to bullying, racism, sexism, violence, intimidation or other), and therefore you would like to report it; or you would like to report one that performs spamming activities or that you believe to be a bot.
It is also true, however, that you may want to track down someone else’s Instagram account because you are interested in following who manages it , or become his follower, as well as talk / interact with this subject through the social network. It may be that you have glimpsed him in your friend’s stories, or that another person you follow has introduced / mentioned him in his videos.
How to find an Instagram account of others
Whatever the reason that drives you to want to identify who manages a particular Instagram account, you can try different ways to “investigate”.
If you remember / know the ‘username (also indicatively) or his name and surname, the first attempt must be made via the search bar of the same app. Consider that by tapping on the item “ Account “, the results will be further narrowed, because it will not include hashtags, places or other information that does not refer to users.
Otherwise try to consult posts where you think you will find likes and comments of the account in question, or where it may have been tagged. You should be able to find their username and get to their profile.
Another way to locate someone on Instagram is to use Facebook . Open the FB application, go to your profile , tap on the three dashes (top right) and select the item “ Suggested people “. At this point, you will be shown people who are subscribed to Facebook and that you may know. See if you can find the one you are interested in.
Lastly, you could also find an Instagram account via search engines . Try typing your name, surname, username – or even just a part of this information – in the search bar. So analyze the results and use them in your favor.
Don’t forget that there are various solutions to find profiles based on the places where they have been tagged. Read how to find new people on Instagram to learn more about this procedure.
How to identify an Instagram account
Once you have identified the Instagram profile in question, you have some ways to figure out if this is actually what you were looking for, as well as to find out more about the person behind it.
Perhaps it goes without saying that, in case it is a profile private , the very first thing to do is follow it and wait for it to accept the follow request; only then can you follow the advice given below. If, on the other hand, the account is public , you do not have to become his follower before implementing my suggestions, but you must not have been blocked either.
Based on what just said, you could proceed by checking:
- The profile photo (taking into account that it could be fake);
- The biography of the profile (often used to link to other social profiles managed by the same person or organization );
- The posts published, especially those of the video type (or IGTV), paying attention to the caption and comments received;
- If, of recently, the profile has been tagged in some photos;
- Any stories , published for 24 hours or in evidence, avoiding following the links (because could be dangerous).
By analyzing these elements (but not only), you could also understand if it is a real account or a fake . For more information, you may want to read the tutorial where I explained how to spot a fake Instagram profile.
What to do after tracing the Instagram account
After tracing the Instagram account (and making sure it was exactly what you were looking for), as I told you, you can become a follower and start following the posts and stories it shares, or – if it publishes offensive content, that go against copyright or are related to spam – you can do it in two different ways:
- File a complaint over the internet , by contacting the Postal Police. If you have never done it before and you don’t know how to behave, you can read the guide in which I explain, step by step, what you need to do to report online;
- Otherwise, if you don’t want to be so drastic , you can always report the account to Instagram, even just a specific content or comment of it, explaining why you are doing it. Instagram will ask you if it is spam or something inappropriate, then going down further in detail and letting you decide between various options available.
The social network will take charge of your report, will examine the profile and will let you know if it actually violates one or more of its standards. If the answer were to be affirmative, the social network team could decide to remove a particular post or to completely obscure the profile, also based on the seriousness of the situation and the number of reports that have arrived. In fact, you are much more likely to get an account closed if there are many who point out to Instagram that “something is wrong”.
When you report a user, you also have the option to block him on Instagram , so that he no longer sees his posts, stories and IGTV videos. By doing so, even if you type his username in the search bar, it will not appear, and you too will be a “ghost” for him.