What Does “User not found” Mean on Instagram?

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Written by: Alex Popa


What Does “User not found” Mean on Instagram?

The “User not found” error on Instagram – how close are you to slamming the desk because of it? That close, huh?

Fortunately, I can help you avoid that.

Here’s why that error occurs:

  1. You mistyped their username
  2. The user’s account is suspended
  3. The user’s account is disabled
  4. The user’s account has been deleted
  5. The user blocked you
  6. The user changed their username

Now, if you want actionable solutions, I’ll explain below, so I encourage you to keep reading if you want to solve the problem!

What Does “User not found” Mean on Instagram

1. Mistyping their username

Finding a simple and unique username on Instagram is no easy job. You see, more than a billion users are using the app, each with a unique username.

Chances are everyone you know has a slightly more complicated username on Instagram, and many resorts to unusual letters or character combinations that aren’t easy to remember or spell.

Omit a letter or bold another one unintentionally, and the “User not found” error is bound to appear.

To fix this, use another social media account to ask that person for their Instagram username, if you’re not sure about it.

Alternatively, you can go to other Instagram accounts that follow the account you’re trying to find.

Look for their full username in the other person’s follower or following list.

2. User account is suspended

Maybe the account you’re trying to access is suspended?

Instagram account disabled message someone received when their account gets banned
Instagram account disabled

As you can see in the image above, a suspended account may be disabled, which means that other people can’t access it or visit its profile. No one can until the account is reinstated.

Instagram usually suspends accounts that have broken community guidelines and rules, and these accounts are permanently banned until the user appeals.

Inappropriate posts containing nude, discriminatory, violent, unlawful, hateful, infringing, adult, or suggestive content are the most common reasons for bans.

Normal bans are lifted within 24 hours, but permanent bans are trickier to solve. The user has to contact Instagram and negotiate with them.

Instagram sometimes suspends accounts by mistake, as well.

Therefore, you can bypass the “User not found” error by waiting for a day or two.

3. User account is disabled

The “User not found” Instagram error may appear if the user has disabled their account.

They may do this for various reasons, but mainly, they want to take a break from the app.

While it’s simpler to log off and uninstall the app (from your phone), some people prefer to disable their accounts to fight against the temptation.

It also gives them that extra peace of mind they need. Now, a disabled account can’t be found on an Instagram search. Trying to access that account will result in the “User not found” error.

Likewise, followers of that account won’t find a disabled account in their Following list.

A disabled account keeps its personal information, uploaded content, likes, and comments intact.

When the other person re-enables their account, everything is back to normal.

Sadly, there’s nothing you can do to access a disabled account’s profile.

Please wait for the other person to re-enable their account!

4. User account has been deleted

Another possible cause for the “User not found” error on Instagram is a deleted account.

The user may have deleted their account, which means all content of that account is removed too, and this includes posts and comments as well.

Users delete their Instagram accounts when they no longer want to use the app. They may have found another app that they like more or they just don’t like Instagram anymore.

Either way, you can’t find a deleted account on Instagram unless you have their profile in your “recents.”

Or if you previously sent them a message, at which point you can access their account from the “Chats” page.

If that’s the case, you can visit their profile, but the “User not found” error will still appear.

To be sure if the account is deleted, ask that user on another social media account if you know them personally.

5. The user blocked you

The other user could have also blocked you if you get the “User not found” error on Instagram and there’s no other explanation.

Image showing how to block a user on Instagram
Blocking a user on Instagram

If you’re blocked, you can’t find that person’s profile on Instagram. If you try accessing it from your “recents,” you’ll still see the same error.

Many celebrities or content creators block some followers because of rude comments.

You won’t be able to access their profile unless they delist you from their blocking list.

If you have a chat history together, you also won’t be able to send them messages in private.

6. The user changed their username

This is the most common cause of Instagram’s “User not found” error.

Instagram users can change their usernames (handles) at any time.

Once that happens, Instagram delists their old username from their databases.

This means you won’t be able to find the other person’s account with the old username. The error still occurs even if there’s a small difference between the two usernames.

Popular profiles aren’t likely to change their usernames, but regular users do so often.

If you get the “User not found” error on Instagram because of this, the solution is simple.

If you have a chat history together, visit their updated profile. The app will redirect you to the new profile automatically.

Alternatively, if you have followers in common, go to their profile, and search for the other person’s updated profile.

You should be able to recognize the updated name or profile photo.

You could also contact the person on another social media account or by phone and ask them for the updated Instagram username.

I hope this guide has helped you figure out why you’re getting this error and how to solve it. Let me know in the comments below if you’re still having issues with it!

How can you check if someone blocked you on Instagram?

You won’t be able to see the posts of a person who blocked you on Instagram.

If the other person sets their account to “Private,” you’ll get a notification saying, “This Account is Private.”

If the Instagram search doesn’t provide any results either, that’s another sign that the other person has blocked you.

Similarly, you can’t comment on their posts or send direct messages to them.

But previous conversations and comments you posted won’t disappear. You’ll still be able to see them.

If you have a chat history together, open it up, go to their profile, and see if they have any recent posts.

If they don’t, you’re most likely blocked.

You can also use the unique Instagram profile link to check if someone has blocked you.

Replace the username in your profile link with the other person’s username.

This should take you to their account. If the “Sorry, this page isn’t available” error appears, they may have blocked you.

To confirm this, log out of Instagram and search for the same URL in another internet tab. If the same message appears, it means the account has been deactivated.

If you can find the user profile, it means they have blocked you.

What can get your Instagram account suspended?

There are three types of Instagram bans – normal bans, shadow bans, and action blocks.

Action blocks are given when users perform certain actions too quickly.

Shadow bans are given when you use tags that have been banned or post too frequently.

Regular bans are given when you violate Instagram’s terms of service and other regulations.

There are several causes for account suspension, such as:

– Use aggressive automation settings for likes, comments, follows and unfollows
– Use automation without a proxy
– Buy fake likes and followers
– Buy another user’s account
– Create duplicate accounts
– Spam comments and direct messages
– Promote and sell illegal services and products

Action blocks get lifted within 24 hours, but a permanent ban is harder to solve. You need to contact Instagram and fix it.

Does Instagram keep deleted accounts?

If you delete your Instagram account, you’ll have 30 days to change your mind.

After that, Instagram will delete your account and all associated information permanently.

However, during those 30 days, no one will be able to access your account.

Even after 90 days, Instagram may keep backups of your data in storage.

They can use the backup to recover the data in case of a software error or data loss event.

They also keep this information for legal issues, harm prevention efforts, or term violations.

After your account is deleted, you can create another account with that same username, as long as it hasn’t been taken by someone else.

However, if Instagram removes your account for violating the community guidelines, you won’t be able to sign up with the same username.

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Alex Popa

My name is Alex and I have a knack for social media in all its shapes and forms. I’ve dealt with such things for quite some time and I noticed that many people have issues with social media and technicalities.

Unforeseen errors, bugs, and other problems make their use of social media problematic. These things will be discussed amply in the guides on Whizcase.

I'll present the facts as they are, and offer quick and easy solutions for them.

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