Instagram adds ‘recently deleted’ to protect your posts from hackers

The feature adds an extra step if you want to permanently delete a post.

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Karissa Bell
February 2nd, 2021
Instagram's new recently deleted feature can help protect your posts from hackers.
Instagram

Instagram’s latest feature could help protect your post history from hackers. The app is adding a new “recently deleted” feature, which adds an extra step before a post can be permanently removed from your account. The feature is similar to the “recently deleted” folder in the Photos app on iOS: Delete a post and it will appear in a separate section of your profile for 30 days. These posts aren’t viewable to anyone else, but they’ll remain visible to the account owner in case you have second thoughts and want to restore them. 

According to Instagram, it’s also an additional safeguard against hackers who frequently target Instagram accounts. People whose accounts are hacked often have all of their posts removed before they can regain access, which can be a devastating loss for those who rely on their Instagram presence for their business or to keep track of family photos. 

With the addition of “recently deleted,” Instagram says that it will require users to verify their identity via text or email before they’re able to restore a post or remove it permanently. The extra step is essentially a form of two-step verification for purging posts from the app (but, importantly, not a substitute for using two-factor authentication to protect your account in the first place).

Of course, if you’re locked out of your account because of a hack, you won’t immediately be able to access your deleted posts. And getting back into a compromised Instagram account can itself be a daunting task. But it will at least make it more difficult for a hacker to wipe out all of your posts while you wind your way through Instagram support.

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