Three Instagram Message Recovery Strategies to Try if You’ve Deleted Your Messages

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Last updated on August 14th, 2020
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Instagram is home to many of our memories. Between photos, videos and stories, Instagram is a place where we can virtually “hang out” with people all around the world and share pieces of our lives.

Whether you’re a business or an indivdual, you’ve probably used Instagram Direct Messages before to stay in touch with friends or answer questions from a potential customer.

Like our emails, our Instagram messages hold a lot of important information and losing those messages can be stressful.

If you’re wondering, “can I recover deleted Instagram messages?” the answer is maybe, but you won’t know for sure until you try.

There are three free Instagram message recovery methods I’m going to walk you through today so you know how to recover deleted Instagram messages.

Why Would Someone Need to Recover Instagram Direct Messages?

There are many different reasons why you might want to recover Instagram messages:

  • you accidentally deleted an important message thread
  • someone removed their reply to you and you need to have a copy of it
  • your Instagram crashed and you lost your messages

Should I use an Instagram Message Recovery App to View Deleted Messages?

My answer might surprise you, but I don’t think you should use any third-party apps to try and recover your deleted messages.

Here’s why.

Instagram has a very selective list of approved third-party apps which doesn’t include any message recovery apps or websites.

This means if you choose to connect yourself to one of these apps, you run the risk of getting your account banned from Instagram.

Not only that, these apps and websites will have access to all of your messages, is that really something you want?

I didn’t think so…

So let’s dive into three totally safe strategies you can use for Instagram message recovery.

3 Instagram Message Recovery Strategies

I recommend trying these strategies in order and progressing down the list if need be.

1. Ask the Recipient

Messages are a two-way street. If they’ve been deleted from your end, the recipient likely still has copies of the messages.

You can always ask the person on the other end to screenshot the messages and email the screenshots to you so you have them on hand.

This approach is the fastest way to recover Instagram direct messages, but of course, this isn’t always an option.

If you are unable to ask for deleted messages, you’ll want to move onto strategy #2.

2. View Messages from Facebook

If the above step didn’t work, it’s time to try and access your messages from your Facebook account.

Note: this will only work if your Facebook and Instagram account are connected! If you are a business, your accounts will be linked together.

First, head into your Facebook business page.

Along the left hand side, you will see a link to access your messages:

A screenshot of Facebook's message center

Click to head into your messages. You’ll find the messages for your personal Facebook page, your business Facebook page and your Instagram stored here.

A screenshot of Facebook's message center

Click on “Instagram Direct” to view your Instagram messages.

If you aren’t able to retrieve your deleted messages from here, your last option is to download your data.

3. Download Your Data

Downloading your Instagram data will take up to 48 hours, but once you download it, you will be emailed everything related to your Instagram account.

It’s not a guaranteed Instagram message recovery method, however. Instagram states that while they temporarily store things you have deleted, it may not be available in downloaded data.

Although, it’s worth a shot.

First, click on the hamburger icon menu located on your profile in the top right corner:

Screenshot of an Instagram profile

From here, click on “Settings” and then head into “Security”.

Once you are in your security settings, you can click on “Download Data”.

Instagram settings screenshot

Your data will be emailed to your in a zip folder, so enter your email and then click “Request Download”.

Instagram data download request screenshot

You’ll have all of your Instagram data (hopefully along with your deleted direct messages) sent over to you within 48 hours.

How to Prevent Deleted Instagram Messages

Hindsight is 20/20 and unfortauntely if your Instagram messages are gone, it might be too late to retrieve them.

To avoid putting yourself in this position in the future, you can periodically download your Instagram data so you always have a hard-copy of your Instagram messages on hand.

image with text overlay: how to recover deleted instagram messages
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About the Author

Dana Nicole

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Dana Nicole is a freelance content marketer. She has a Bachelor of Business with a major in marketing and has over 10 years of experience in marketing. She's passionate about Instagram marketing, blogging and SEO. Dana currently works with B2B and SaaS clients and uses her blog to help small businesses and bloggers learn online marketing!

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