Following Apple’s guidelines, Instagram adds an account deletion option to iOS

Apple’s updated App Store Review guidelines state that all apps that allow you to create accounts must also include support for deleting those accounts within the app. Until now, if you wanted to delete your Instagram account, you had to log into the platform from a web browser on computer or mobile.

To comply with Apple’s guidelines, Instagram has now added support for app account deletion on iOS. Before this was rolled out, you could deactivate your account through the app, but it didn’t delete your data from the servers. Also, the app didn’t offer any information about the full delete option, because Tech Crunch points out. This led to many users deactivating their accounts instead of being able to delete them completely.

A Meta spokesperson said Tech Crunch in a statement that the company wanted to give people more ways to control their Instagram experience and therefore rolled out the option to delete their account in “Settings” on iOS. The option to temporarily disable the account before permanently deleting it is still available.

If you decide to delete your account, you have 30 days to change your mind before Instagram deletes it permanently. This too falls within Apple’s guidelines, the company finds it “acceptable” if account deletion takes time once initiated.

But this delay also makes sense because it gives the user enough time to change their mind between deactivating their account and deleting it permanently. If during this 30-day period the user launches the application, the account will no longer be deleted.

Many users can take advantage of this 30-day period to take a break from the platform or calm down before reconsidering their decision. Twitter also has a similar cooling off period between initiating an account deletion and postponing it.

Apple’s new guidelines became mandatory for all apps from June 30. The company informed all developers in May that apps that violate these rules could experience review delays when they submit updates.

Apple’s guidelines state that if an app supports account creation, it must also offer account deletion within the app. Additionally, an app may not require a user to enter personal information to function unless it is “directly related to the primary functionality of the app or required by law”.

Apple has made it clear that support for disabling accounts is not sufficient and that apps should have the ability to delete the entire account record and all personal data associated with it.

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Lance B. Holton