Type of Resource


Publication Date

June 22, 2023


Social Media and Apps 

Instagram is a mobile based photo-sharing app which allows users to share pictures and videos either publicly or privately. It is one of the most popular apps used by children and young people, with over 34 million users in the UK in 2022.

Users can interact with other users on Instagram by following them, commenting on their posts, liking their posts, tagging them, or private messaging them.

Did you know?

Instagram has more than 2 billion monthly active users.

Instagram Likes and Views

Instagram users can choose to hide the amount of likes and/or views their posts get, as well as the number of likes on posts by other users. This feature was introduced in June 2021 by the platform to combat the pressure many social media users feel to get more likes, shares, or views on their posts.

When users choose to use this feature, they will see a username followed by ‘and others’ instead of a number. This is also what other users will see.

There are over 100 million uploads to Instagram every day.

Keep in mind that when your profile is created and set to public, anyone can find and view your profile, along with all your photos and videos.

Instagram’s default screen is your Newsfeed, where you can view posts from the people and #Hashtags you follow. From the Newsfeed screen you can navigate to the different screens including Direct Messages, Camera, Search, Notifications, and your Profile.

Core Functions

Take a Break Feature

Age Requirements

Instagram requires everyone to be at least 13 years old before they can create an account, but users can enter a fake date of birth to bypass this requirement.

Our research has found that there are many people under the age of 13 who have Instagram profiles. If there is a young person in your care who is under the age of 13, talk to them about Instagram and the importance of age restrictions.

There is a ‘Sensitive Content Control’ setting for users to control the type of potentially upsetting content they see. This is split into three levels of ‘More’, ‘Standard’, and ‘Less’ which are on default depending on the age of the user. Ensuring any child or young person is on ‘less’ will require their date of birth to be correct upon registration.


Safety Settings

Top Tips

Deleting or deactivating your Instagram account

If a user finds they are spending too much time on Instagram, they can deactivate or permanently delete their account. When they deactivate their profile, posts, comments, and likes will be hidden until they login again. When they permanently delete their account, it’s no longer possible to log in or restore any of their information. Their profile, posts, comments and likes will be permanently deleted.

They can download a copy of their Instagram data and activity before deactivating or deleting their account. This can take up to 48 hours.

Follow the links below for help with deactivating & deleting your account

Adjust your safety settings, report and block in Instagram

If someone is pretending to be you or someone that you know on Instagram, you can report them directly to Instagram.

Welcome to the Online Safety Hub

How old are you?

If you are under 18, click the blue button below to visit the Online Safety Hub micro-site for children and young people.