Instagram to Let Users Download Their Account Data

Facebook Inc’s Instagram will soon let its users download a copy of all the data they’ve uploaded on the platform.

This comes amid global concerns about the privacy of users’ information on social media platforms and the amount of user data that companies keep.

The photo-sharing platform has lacked any such feature like allowing its users to download their photos, messages, clicked advertisements and a log of all their activity.

Portability Tool

Instagram has made it very difficult to export account data. Users can’t drag, or tap and hold on images to save them. Also, they can’t download images you’ve already posted.

“We are building a new data portability tool,” an Instagram spokesman said via email. The tool will allow users to download data including their photos, videos, and messages, he added.

If the tool launches before May 25, it will help Instagram comply with upcoming European privacy laws requiring data portability.

Instagram, which has some 800 million users worldwide, did not say when it expects to launch the tool.

Portability could facilitate the rise of legitimate competitors to Instagram, or at least let users back up their content on an image storage app or their own computer.

Nevertheless, it’s Instagram’s social graph and the data it’s gathered about your interests that help it tune its algorithm. This is to show users their most relevant posts.

This personalization moat can leave rivals with similar features unable to provide a similar level of service.

Separately on Wednesday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg answered questions from U.S. lawmakers about data privacy.  This is due to the wake of revelations last month that several millions of Facebook users’ personal data were wrongly harvested from the platform by Cambridge Analytica, a political consultancy.

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