A security researcher was awarded $6,000 when he discovered a bug that allowed him to access deleted messages and photos over a year ago.


Saugat Pokharel reported to the social media company that the content he deleted in October was still available when he downloaded a copy of them in the app. The feature was activated when Instagram went to comply with GDPR regulations.

In response, Instagram mentioned that the bug was now fixed. A spokesperson mentioned that the deleted messages and images were copied when the user accessed the Download Your Information tool in error.

Instagram’s bug is similar to what was discovered in Twitter in 2019, with messages being stored in archive data and when the account was no longer active. Being able to retrieve deleted data could be a bug, but it’s worthy to note that deleted content can still be stored in servers for a while.

Instagram says deleted data are usually removed after 90 days, while Twitter says they remove them after 30 days.


Samantha is a senior news editor at iLounge. She has been covering the technology industry for over five years, writing about Apple, Google, and other major companies. Samantha has also worked as a reporter and editor for several other publications.