User passwords exposed via Data Download Tool on Instagram

Recently, Instagram accidentally exposed some user passwords through its data download tool. Users were informed via email that if they had used the “Data Download Tool, their passwords were exposed. It was done by being included in the URL of a webpage tied to the tool. Additionally, the passwords were also stored on Facebook’s computers. It was soon discovered and affected small number of people.

Data Download Tool

What is Data Download Tool?

It is designed to let Instagram users download a copy of their photos, videos, stories, profile info, comments, and messages. Once a data download request is submitted to Instagram, it takes some time for the data to be prepared. The company asks users to input an email address, with a download link set after the data is gathered. Instagram says data requests can take up to 48 hours to be fulfilled.

Instagram has become a hub for creators as opposed to just being a photo sharing and editing platform. Many users have started developing a preference for it even over Facebook. It has led many people to dub it the “new Facebook“.

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How to use Data Download Tool?

If you’re concerned about your privacy, as well as looking to delete your Instagram account, here’s how to make sure you get all the precious memories you’ve collected over the years before you log off for good. Additionally, Instagram’s tool made it much easier to acquire a backup of everything. It also gave users a chance to take a quick trip down memory lane for all the old photos.

Here is how to use the feature.

  1. Head to your Instagram profile in your favorite web browser.
  2. Click on the little gear icon at the top right of your profile to open the Settings menu.
  3. Select Privacy and Security.
  4. Scroll down until you see Data Download. Click on Request Download.
  5. Enter the email address associated with your Instagram account, then click Next.
  6. Firstly, enter your Instagram password.
  7. Secondly, click Request Download.
  8. Finally, Instagram will begin creating a file of your data that they will then email to you. Note that this could take up to two days depending on how much you’ve shared on your account.

This feature was rolled out by the company in April 2018. Instagram reportedly said that the bug is fixed. They suggested that users should change their password as a precaution.

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Vaibhav Tyagi

Vaibhav Tyagi

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