Why Can’t I Find Someone on Instagram


You may have noticed that you’ve gone to search for someone’s account that usually comes up when you make a search for it, but this time their account doesn’t come up. This may lead you to have a few questions such as, have they blocked me? what happened to their account? why isn’t Instagram showing it to me?

Why Can’t I Find Someone on Instagram?

The reason Instagram won’t show you someone’s account when you try to search for it is either that they have blocked you or their account has been deactivated.

When someone has blocked you, then you’re unable to view their account because Instagram will make it inaccessible to you. When someone deactivates their account, it means that it’s been deleted from Instagram temporarily and you won’t be able to access it until they activate it again.

It could also be the case that Instagram has suspended their account which means that their account has been taken down temporarily – that’s if they choose to unsuspend it.

1. Instagram is Down

There have been times when Instagram was down. Even though they are beneficial, Instagram’s regular upgrades wind up producing a great deal of instability on the network. The fact that you attempt to use the app only to discover that Instagram is unavailable is not uncommon.

There isn’t a clear sign telling you whether Instagram is down or up right now. If you start the app, as usual, you will see all of the posts you have previously viewed, as if there is nothing wrong with it at all.

However, the first indication will be in the new postings, which will be those that have not yet been loaded. The fact that they aren’t loading correctly — for example, if the subtitles added to videos using some of the applications that add text to videos show up, but the videos don’t, or if the update indicator continues to spin indefinitely – might be an indication that Instagram is down.

There’s a website called downdetector that allows you to see when Instagram is having an issue with its server. All you have to do is search, ‘is Instagram down?’. It tells you when there’s a surge in the number of complaints people are making in regards to Instagram not working properly.

If you see that the live outrage is concentrated around your location, it looks like you’ll have to wait for the server to come back up again.

2. They Deleted Their Account

You will not be able to find their Instagram account if they have deleted it. You will only see an account with the username “Instagram user or User not found,’ and their profile will be empty if you have communicated with them via Direct Message.

If you haven’t spoken with them via Direct Message, you will only see an account with the username Instagram User, whose profile will be empty. When you search for an account that has been deleted, you will get a user not found notification. If the person decides to reactivate it, that will be when you can find them.

3. They Changed Their Username

People often change their user names on social media platforms. When searching for someone on Instagram, you need to know the username they are currently using to find their account. If they change their account and you only know the old one, you won’t be able to find them.

Searching for the old one will not yield any results, and it will not lead you to the new account. Ask the person for their new username n Instagram so that you can search for them and find them.

Tip: Since you’re searching for someone, if you’re worried they’ll know you searched them, there are a few things you’ll need to know about this.

4. You’re Not Connected to The Internet

Instagram requires a steady internet connection to function correctly. It would not be possible to load new content or update your feed if no internet connection is available. You may even activate and deactivate the Airplane mode at the same time. It will allow your mobile networks to reset.

The process of resetting your network settings can also help when trying to fix any internet or connectivity difficulties that your phone may be experiencing, which might be causing issues with Instagram’s performance.

Once you reconnect to the internet, you can try to search again. Apart from airplane mode, you can toggle between the Wi-Fi and data to get a stable internet connection.

5. They’re Shaddownbanned

Shadowbanning refers to the act of restricting a user’s social media content in such a way that the user is entirely unaware that it is taking place. As a result, if you are shadowbanned on Instagram, likely, you will not be aware that you have gotten targeted. The Instagram shadowban isn’t going to last forever.

The majority of users believe that the shadowban usually lasts for 14 days. When someone is shadowbanned, you will not find their account by searching for it as it will not appear in the search box.

To find a shadowbanned account, you need to either have a picture they are tagged in or have been chatting with them on direct message.

Unfortunately, because people are not notified when they are shadowbanned, they are not in a position to explain what happened to their account. It might lead people to think they have been blocked.

Were You Blocked Or Was Their Account Deactivated?

To Find Out If You Were Blocked

The first and most reliable way to find out if you’ve been blocked on Instagram is by checking if you can find their name in the search results.

When you search for someone’s Instagram username, their account usually comes up after typing the first few letters. This only works if you have any history with the account.

Blocked on Instagram

If you search up every part of their username on Instagram and they don’t show up, you’ve been blocked – this only happens if their account is on private.

If you search for their name and you find their account, but you see a message on their profile saying, ‘No Posts Yet’, you’ve been blocked.

The next thing you can do to find out if you’ve been blocked is by looking for their tagged username in a picture. You can do this by going on their best friends Instagram account and looking for a photo that includes both of them.

If they have tagged the person you think may have blocked you, you need to click on their tag and check if you can see their pictures.

If you see the term No Posts Yet, they’ve unfortunately blocked you.

If you can’t find a tagged picture of them, you can try and look for their profile in a comment section. If you know that they follow someone, or you know a post that they’ve commented on, you can go back to that post and look for their username.

If you’ve found their username underneath a picture, you can click on their name and check if they’ve blocked you.

If they did block you, you’re going to see the message ‘No Posts Yet’ when you click on their profile.

To Find Out If They Deactivated Their Account

If the person has deactivated their account, then you won’t be able to see their profile. If they’ve blocked you, then you also won’t be able to see their profile, so knowing that doesn’t help. What will help, however, is if you ask someone else if they can see that person’s profile.

Even if the person has a private profile, the other person should still be able to see that they have a profile. If they search for the person’s account and they don’t see a profile, private or public, appear, then that means that person has deactivated their account.

It’s quite common to have multiple Instagram profiles, especially with the rise of “finstas” or fake Instagrams. If you already have another profile, then you’re all set, but if not, you can create one rather easily.

When prompted to sign in, select the “Sign Up” option and you can put any information that you want into the boxes. You might want to include a username and password that you’ll remember.

Attempt to view their profile on this new Instagram account. If their profile doesn’t appear, then they’ve deactivated their account. This is a great method for if you don’t want to ask someone to look at the account for you.

What To Do If You Can’t Search for Someone

If you are having difficulty finding someone by searching for them on Instagram, you can try the following:

Ask Them for Their Username

Most people communicate on different social media platforms apart from Instagram. Some friendships start in the real world then evolve to social media.

It leads to people following each other on Facebook, chatting on WhatsApp, and even being friends on Snapchat. If you communicate with your friends on more than one social media, you can access them even when you can’t find them on Instagram.

Once you search for them on Instagram and can’t find them, you can send them a text message, facetime them, or even call them. From here, ask them what their username on Instagram is. If it changed, they’ll tell you the new one. If they blocked you or they’ve deactivated their account, they’ll probably let you know.

Ask a Friend to Send Their Post to You

When two people become friends through mutual friends, they are referred to as “mutual friends.” When those two persons come face to face, they discover that they have the same buddy in common; the friend they have in common is referred to as their mutual friend.

Suppose the two people become friends, a circle of friendship forms between them and their mutual buddy. The notion of mutual friends may be applied to social networking sites and traditional networking sites. The term “mutual friend” on Instagram refers to someone you share a friend with.

The mutual friend has access to both accounts, and this is the person to ask when you can’t find the other friend on Instagram. You can ask the mutual friend to tag you in a comment or send you a post that will lead to the account that you are looking for.

Wait for Them to Post so You’ll See Their Account in Your Feed

The Instagram algorithm was created to help in providing users with the most outstanding and most relevant content each time they check their Instagram feed.

Instagram analyzes your previous behavior to determine whether or not you are likely to be interested. Consequently, if you regularly engage with a certain kind of information, that content will always be in your feed.

Posts from your friends and family, such as a post on your friend’s engagement, are essential to Instagram, and it doesn’t want you to miss them.

As a result, posts from your friends are more likely to appear higher on your news feed. Instagram’s algorithm analyzes your prior interactions to discover which accounts you connect with the most frequently to decide who your friends are.

When the person you are searching for on Instagram is a friend whose posts you engage with regularly, you will have to wait for them to post to see their account in your feed.

Find Their Account on Someone Else’s Profile Through a Post They’re Tagged In

Tagging is one of the most used features on Instagram that you should use. This specific feature allows you to include the names of other Instagram users in your post.

They will receive a notice, and your post will become a permanent part of their profile on Instagram. If you have a mutual friend who has pictures where the person you are looking for is tagged, you can go to the tagged post as it will lead you to their profile.

When you tap on a picture where the person you are looking for is tagged, their username will appear, then you can press on it, and it will lead you to their Instagram account.

Wait Till They’ve Reactivated Their Account

Instagram accounts can be disabled if you want to take a vacation from Instagram for some time. Only Instagram accounts that have been disabled can be reinstated; deleting your account is a one-time and irreversible action.

You may reactivate it at any moment by signing into your account once again. There is, however, one stipulation in this regard. Instagram only allows you to disable your account once a week, according to their terms of service.

If you can’t find someone on Instagram because the account is deactivated, you will have to wait for them to reactivate it before you can search and find their account.

David Johnson is a freelance writer with 9 years of experience writing for Techzillo and other established tech outlets like iMore. His focus and key interests are Apple and accessibility as well as consumer technology in general. Read our Editorial Guidlines and Fact Checking process.


  1. What happens when o was following someone and they have been messaged for me and I’m not blocked my them. But there account isn’t there anyone could someone have hacked and block me from them I can see every one else’s and

  2. Hey
    Ihave problem that my friend and i cant find eachother in instagram
    Maybe we blocked in 10 years ego
    But now we find eachother but we pages show not found or not has a post yet.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here