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As you know, it is all about the social media platforms nowadays and not just in terms of using the internet. Everything is on them and they are beneficial to have for more than just staying in touch with your friends and family and getting frequent updates on their whereabouts. Out of all the popular services people use nowadays, Instagram is arguably the most popular. While it may have started its life as an image sharing app, today it is so much more.

Instagram is popular worldwide and not just among regular people who open private accounts for their personal needs. Businesses and organizations all have their own profiles, and more often than not a single user has multiple accounts that they use for various purposes. This means that there are billions of accounts in existence. However, only around a billion of them are active since there is roughly 1 billion active monthly users. Such a situation is problematic for any new user or an existing user who wants to change their username. There are simply too many combinations of letters, numbers, and other symbols already tied to profiles so people cannot use exactly what they want.

Luckily, there is a workaround around this and it is probably not what you expect. If you desperately want to utilize a certain username that you have been associated with on other platforms and for years prior, you will want to know that it is actually possible to claim an inactive Instagram username. In this article we will talk more about this interesting chance for you to have a proper page that describes you the best way possible. Read more if you wish to find out additional information related to this topic.

Claiming Inactive Accounts

Now we get to the real deal, claiming a username from a seemingly inactive and no longer used account. Since nobody is actually behind it nor using it any longer, there is no need for it to exist or at least take the place of a desired username.

This is what would be logical, right? Well, since we do not live in a perfect world and there should be some respect and care for the users after all, one cannot just strip an account off its identification. Therefore, you will be sad to know that there is not an official nor actually possible way to take another account’s name.


Wait for what, we hear you ask. Well, for that perfect, elusive username of course. This could take a long time but it does happen in some situations. Except waiting for it to get deleted or taken down by Instagram, you cannot do much in most situations. This may take ages however since accounts are not taken down so easily especially if they just sit there without breaking any rules or otherwise getting in the way.


One thing you can do with hopes of claiming their account name is to report the page. Now, this is not a very polite thing to do and it will not do much most of the times. If the account did nothing wrong, your appeal to the Instagram admins and moderators to ban them or delete them will be in vain. To make matters worse, you may get in trouble for continuously reporting legitimate accounts with no reason.

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Choose a Similar Name

Since it is widely understood that you cannot actually steal away people’s usernames nor have one exactly like theirs, you should use the easiest workaround there is. Choosing the most lookalike version of the desired name is the next best thing and it comes in many shapes and lengths. For example, you can have varieties in terms of capital letters. You can use double, triple, or however many of the same letter as you please. Substituting letters for numbers or using abbreviations, underscores, periods, and other symbols can help you make a unique username.

As long as it contains the words you aimed for like your initials, name, surname, or brand, the rest does not matter. You can always put additional information in the dedicated name section and a short description in the bio section. The important thing to do is actually have an Instagram page, be it with this placeholder name, until the one you wand becomes available.

Impersonating Report

There is an option tab in the app called Username Claim Form. This is mostly used when somebody tries to pretend to be something else and the victim realizes it. Naturally, they want the impersonator to be banned and their account taken down. Therefore, Instagram came up with a neat step-by-step process. Out of the four options in this form, pick the “Someone created an account pretending to be me or a friend” after which you will get another question asking if the account is impersonating you.

Click on yes and then you will have to fill in your full name, your email address, and the full name listed on the account you wish to report. In addition, the Instagram username of the reported account is needed, the one you are aiming for. After you do this, 24 hours have to pass in order for you to get a reply. An email will arrive from the admins about your request. This rarely happens immediately, especially if your claim was the only one. Try to get some friends in on the job and have them report it for you as the friend who is being impersonated.

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Copyright or Trademark

You can always copyright or trademark the username and have it yours by law. After this, nobody will be able to use it and if they do, a simple complaint to Instagram does the trick. It is a somewhat demanding process but a well worth one if you are serious about your social media.

Buy the Account

Another thing to try is purchasing the account. It may be inactive but the owner may still be around and easy to find online. If you can get in touch with the inactive user, they may be willing to sell their account to you after which you can turn it around and use it yourself exactly how you wanted to. You could already have some followers attached to it as well if you are lucky.