Each social media platform offers its own version of privacy settings. However, some users don’t believe these controls are enough in light of the privacy & security concerns surrounding social media as a whole.
If you’re ready to say goodbye to these platforms, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to delete social media accounts.
Here is how to close your Twitter account:
Go to Settings and Privacy > scroll down to Deactivate Your Account > Review the information and select Deactivate.
Go to Settings and Privacy > choose Account > Deactivate Your Account > Review the information and select Deactivate.
Note: After 30 days, your deactivated account will become permanently deleted.
To deactivate or permanently delete your Facebook account:
Click the drop-down arrow in the upper right corner > Settings > select Your Facebook Information in the left-hand column > Deactivation and Deletion.
Click the settings gear on your profile page > View Privacy Shortcuts > scroll down to Delete Your Account and Information.
To deactivate or permanently delete your Instagram account:
To deactivate your social media account, go to your profile page > select Edit Profile > Temporarily Disable My Account.
To delete your social media account, visit https://www.instagram.com/accounts/remove/request/permanent/ > if you’re not already signed in, you will be prompted to sign in to your account before continuing > select a reason for deleting your account.
Will Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Keep You from Being Tracked Online?
Unfortunately, protecting your online identity isn’t as simple as googling "how to delete social media accounts" or "how to deactivate social media". Why?
Here’s an example: Facebook (who also owns Instagram) tracks almost 30% of web traffic according to a Ghostery study. These tracking scripts allow Facebook to gather and collect data outside of the platform itself.
This is why you can shop for a particular item online and then see ads for that item on your feed almost immediately after. This data is valuable whether it can be tied to an existing account or not.
Facebook is tracking you even without a Facebook account
Even when users don’t have a Facebook account, data is still being collected about them through the use of shadow profiles. “The tracking data contains unique identifiers (UIDs) that theoretically enable Facebook to link behavioral data to individual Internet users and to de-anonymize them very easily.” Deleting your account won’t protect you from this type of tracking.
Use Anti-Tracking tools while browsing the Web
If you’re taking this initiative, we suggest going a step further and using anti-tracking tools in tandem with your other privacy efforts. Anti-tracking tools, such as Ghostery, identify tracking scripts on webpages and block them before they are able to collect your data, giving you a faster and safer browsing experience. Download the Ghostery Tracker & Ad Blocker for your preferred browser to start blocking trackers today.