Internet spring cleaning: How to delete Instagram, Facebook and other accounts
So you’ve washed your sheets and vacuumed under the couch in the name of spring cleaning. But what about your online clutter?
Apps that delight, inform and keep you connected deserve room in your digital space. But if you haven’t used your Facebook account in years, or you’re looking to permanently take back some time from doomscrolling, you might consider getting rid of some accounts once and for all. Of course, like other services that profit off of you – in this case, off your user information — social media and other online platforms can make it hard to cut ties. Here’s a guide to that elusive delete button for when you’ve made up your mind.
On Firefox, you can limit the social media giant tracking your online activities through the Facebook Container extension without deleting your Facebook account. Though, *wildly gestures at news headlines over the past couple of years*, we don’t blame you if you want to stop using the app for good. You may have even deactivated your Facebook account before and found that you can log right back in. Here’s how to actually delete Facebook through the mobile app:
- Find the menu icon on the bottom right.
- Scroll all the way down.
- From there, go to settings & privacy > personal and account information > account ownership and control > deactivation and deletion.
- Select delete account, then continue to account deletion > continue to account deletion > delete account.
- Enter your password, hit continue and click on delete account. Facebook will start deleting your account in 30 days, just make sure not to log back in before then.
Here’s how to delete Facebook through your browser:
- Find the account icon (it looks like an upside-down triangle in the top right corner).
- From there, go to settings & privacy > settings > your Facebook information > deactivation and deletion.
- Select delete account, then continue to account deletion > delete account > confirm deletion.
It may take up to 90 days to delete everything you’ve posted, according to Facebook. Also note that the company says after that period, it may keep copies of your data in “backup storage” to recover in some instances such as software error and legal issues.
So you’ve decided to shut down your Instagram account. Maybe you want to cleanse your digital space from its parent company, Meta. Perhaps you’re tired of deleting the app only to reinstall it later. Whatever your reason, here’s how to delete your Instagram:
- Visit https://instagram.com/accounts/remove/request/permanent and log in, if you aren’t already logged in.
- You’ll see a question about why you want to delete your account. Pick an option from the dropdown menu.
- Re-enter your password.
- Click on delete [username].
- When prompted, confirm that you want to delete your account.
- You’ll see a page saying your account will be deleted after a month. You’ll be able to log in before then if you choose to keep your account.
Whether you’ve migrated to another similar social media platform, or have simply outgrown it, you may be tempted to just delete the Snapchat app from your phone and get on with it. But you’ll want to scrub your data, too. Here’s how to delete your Snapchat account from an iOS app:
- Click on the profile icon on the top left, then the settings icon on the top right.
- Scroll all the way down and hit delete account.
- Enter your password then continue. Your account will be deleted in 30 days.
Here’s how to delete your Snapchat account from your browser:
- Visit https://accounts.snapchat.com/accounts/delete_account and log in.
- Enter your password. Your account will be deleted in 30 days.
Twitter can be a trove of information. It can also enable endless doomscrolling. If you’d rather get your news and and debate people on the latest hot take elsewhere, here’s how to delete your Twitter account from a browser:
- Once you’re logged in, click on more on the left-hand side of your Twitter homepage.
- Click on settings & privacy > your account > deactivate your account > deactivate.
- Enter your password and hit confirm.
Here’s how to delete your Twitter account from the app:
- Click on the profile icon, then go to settings and privacy > your account > deactivate your account > deactivate.
- Enter your password.
Google’s share of the global search market stands at about 85%. While the tech giant will likely continue to loom large over our lives, from search to email to our calendars, we can delete inactive or unnecessary Google accounts. Here’s how to do that:
- Go to https://myaccount.google.com/data-and-privacy and scroll down to your data & privacy options.
- Click on more options > delete your Google account.
- Enter your password and hit delete account.
Amazon has had its fair share of controversies, particularly about data collection and how the retail giant treats its workers. If you’ve decided that easy access and quick deliveries aren’t worth the price anymore, here’s how to delete your Amazon account:
- Go to https://www.amazon.com/privacy/data-deletion.
- Make sure to read which Amazon services you won’t have access to after you delete your account.
- Check “Yes, I want to permanently close my Amazon Account and delete my data.”
- Hit close my account.
- Check your text messages or emails for a notification from Amazon.
- Click on the confirm account closure link.
- Enter your password.
Payment app Venmo has made it easier to split bills and pay for things without cash. But if you’ve decided to use other ways to do that, you’ll want to delete your account along with your bank information with it. You’ll first have to transfer any funds in your Venmo account to your bank account. Another option: return the funds to sender. If you have any pending transactions, you’ll need to address them before you can close your account. Once you’re set, here’s how to delete your Venmo account on your browser:
- Go to https://venmo.com/account/settings/cancel and log in.
- Near the bottom, click on close my Venmo account > begin closing my account > confirm.
Here’s how to close your Venmo account in the app:
- On the bottom right, click on the person icon.
- On the top right, go to settings by clicking on the gear icon.
- Click on account > close Venmo account > continue > confirm.
TikTok has exploded in popularity, surpassing Twitter and Snapchat’s combined ad revenue in February. If you’ve tried the app and decided it’s not for you, here’s how to delete your TikTok account:
- In the app, click the profile icon on the bottom right.
- Click the three-line icon on the top right.
- Click on settings and privacy > manage account > delete account.
- Follow the prompts.
Whether you want to follow in Neil Young’s footsteps or are already streaming music and podcasts through another service, deleting your stagnant Spotify account is a good idea. If you have a subscription, you’ll need to cancel that first. Once you’re ready, here’s how to delete your Spotify account.
- In your web browser, go to https://support.spotify.com/close-account/.
- Follow the prompts in a five-step confirmation process. It will conclude with an email with a link to close your account.
With our lives so online, our digital space can get messy with inactive and unnecessary accounts — and forgetting about them can pose a security risk. While you’re off to a good start with our one-stop shop for deleting online accounts, it’s far from exhaustive. So here’s a bonus tip: Sign up for Firefox Monitor. It alerts you when your data shows up in any breaches, including on websites that you’ve forgotten giving your information to.