Backing Up Your Instagram Photos


A few months ago, a friend shared one of the most anxiety-causing status updates I've ever seen on Facebook: Instagram had permanently locked her out of her account. She had done nothing wrong and to this day still doesn't know why and hasn't been able to access her photos from that account. Maybe someone hacked her account and abused it or maybe someone accidentally reported her for spam or maybe this was just a glitch that Instagram hasn't worked out yet.

Whatever the reason, I was terrified because I'd had my phone stolen last year and so the photos that I had on Instagram were more or less the only photos I had left from 2011-2012 (let's not talk about how I should have been backing up iPhone photos to my computer...I've learned my lesson). The thought of losing these as well was too much!

At the time, I searched but somehow could not find any app or service that would back up my Instagrams. I started the painstaking process of logging into my Instagram account online and screenshotting since you can't right-click and "Save As." And so every time I had a little downtime, I would take a few moments and save a few more. Yeah. Seriously.

a few of my 2011-2012 favorites: the spruce street bridge // coaly and me, months before she passed away :( // moving into the sunset house

Frustrated with this epic project, I decided to search again yesterday for a website that could do this for me, positive that I had missed something. As you can see from the screenshot at the top, I obviously had. Instaport is a magical website that will export your entire Instagram library to a .zip file so that you can back up your photos on your hard drive or cloud service. It'll even filter photos that have a certain hashtag (great way to export all those hashtagged wedding or party pics from your friend's accounts into one folder!) or pull photos from a certain time span. And somehow it's been around since .... April of last year. But I digress. Better late than never. Besides, I'd only made it through saving the low 200s of my 1400+ photos, so I'm not complaining.

I feel so relieved to have a backup copy of my Instagram shots in case something ever goes wrong with my account or I want to start all over. Apparently there's also a paid service called SocialSafe that will pull information from all of your social media networks (think: Facebook photos and Pinterest pins) and sync only the updated information regularly for around $7-28 annually, depending on the number of networks you have. I'm sure there's tons more. Do you back up your social media? If so, what service do you use?