How To Find Contacts on Instagram and Stay Connected Online

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Karen Lin

Instagram 101 | Jun 17, 2024

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Social media is terrific for staying in touch with old friends, distant relatives, and people you don’t see often. But sometimes, finding these people on Instagram and other online platforms is difficult. If all you have is their old phone number or email address, is it possible to trace them online? Keep reading this quick guide to see how to find contacts on Instagram.

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Can You Find Contacts on Instagram?

It’s easy to find someone online if you know their social media username—but can you find contacts on Instagram? Yes, it’s very much possible as long as you’re willing to sync your phone contacts with the platform.

According to Oberlo, 49.7% of people online use social media to keep up with the lives of friends and family. Instagram is a terrific way to do that. Here, you can see updates on their lives through posts and IG Stories or even catch up over direct messages. And what better way to connect with old pals and colleagues than you’re your existing contact list on your phone?

Luckily, Instagram makes this process super easy with something called contact syncing. Basically, when you turn on this feature, you give Instagram full access to your phone contacts. From there, the algorithm searches for accounts on the platform linked to these numbers and email addresses. Then, it pushes out suggestions to follow these users in the people you may know section of the app.

How To Find Contacts on Instagram iPhone and Android

Are you ready to sync your contacts with Instagram to reconnect with old friends and colleagues you don’t follow yet? Here’s how to find contacts on Instagram (iPhone and Android):

1. Open the Instagram app.

2. Click your profile picture at the bottom-right corner of the page to head to your feed.

3. Tap the hamburger icon (three horizontal lines) at the top of your profile to go to the settings.

4. Tap Accounts Center at the top of the menu.

Path Social’s screenshot of someone’s Instagram settings with a red box highlighting the “Accounts Center” button.

5. In the Meta Accounts Center, click Your information and permissions.

Path Social’s screenshot of the Meta Accounts Center with a red box highlighting “Your information and permissions”.

6. Select Upload contacts.

Path Social’s screenshot of Meta’s permissions menu with a red box highlighting the “Upload contacts” button.

7. The next page should show you all your existing Meta accounts. Click on your Instagram profile.

8. Switch on the toggle labeled Connect contacts to sync your phone contact list with Instagram.

Path Social’s screenshot of Meta’s contact syncing page with the “Connect contacts” toggle switched on.

And that’s it! Now, you can type a contact’s name on Instagram’s search bar and see if they’re on the platform. Instagram will also start suggesting that you follow people in your contacts who you don’t already know.

Do you want to get notifications about phone contacts who are on Instagram? Turn on notifications to get these updates! Here’s how:

1. On the Instagram app, click the profile icon on the bottom-right of the home screen.

2. On your profile, click the hamburger icon.

3. Under “How you use Instagram”, click Notifications.

Path Social’s screenshot of Instagram’s settings menu with a red box highlighting “Notifications”.

4. In the push notifications menu, tap Following and followers.

Path Social’s screenshot of the notifications settings with a red box highlighting “Following and followers”.

5. Select the On toggle under Account suggestions.

Path Social’s screenshot of the toggle for account suggestion notifications turned on.

That’s it! Now, you’ll start getting notifications about your contacts on Instagram.

How To Disconnect Your Contacts From Instagram

Let’s say that after constantly Googling, “how to find my contacts on Instagram,” one day, you just change your mind. Is there a way to disconnect your phone contacts from the Meta Accounts Center?

Yes, it’s easy to disconnect your contact list from Instagram. Just go through all the steps above, but backward. Here’s how to do it:

1. Go to Meta’s Account Center on the Instagram app.

2. Click Your information and permissions, followed by Upload contacts.

3. Switch off the toggle labeled Connect contacts.

Note that turning off contact syncing doesn’t delete the contacts you’ve uploaded before. It merely stops the app from syncing new contacts regularly. To permanently delete all the contacts you’ve uploaded, you need to use a computer. Here’s how:

1. Go to the Instagram website and log in with your credentials.

2. Click your profile picture on the lower-left portion of the screen to go to your profile.

3. Select Edit profile at the top of the page.

4. Under the settings menu, click See more in Accounts Center.

5. Tap Your information and permissions.

6. Tap Manage contacts. The next page will show you a list of all the contacts you’ve synced with Instagram.

7. Click Delete all at the top of the list of contacts.

8. Confirm in the pop-up message that appears that you wish to delete all your contacts.

Note that it could take up to three months for Instagram to finish the deletion process. Until then, you might still receive some notifications and suggestions about accounts linked to people in your contact list.

Other Ways To Find People You Might Know on Instagram

Do you want to find people you know in real life on Instagram without uploading your contacts? Here are some sneaky account search methods to find people you might know IRL on Instagram:

  • Use the search bar. You can type anything from someone’s Instagram handle to their full name and even hashtags that include their name.
  • Check out your mutual friends with people you know. You might stumble upon the profiles of people within your circle by checking out who your friends are following.
  • Explore your city’s location tag. Scroll through the accounts of users in your neighborhood or community. It’s a great way to meet new people and possibly find someone you know when they’re posting about your town.

A world map with a red pin marking Mexico City.

How To Find Contacts on Instagram Updates in 2024

Are you wondering if there’s a new “how to find contacts on Instagram” update this year? Unfortunately, we haven’t heard any new updates on their methods for how to find contacts on IG. So, it seems that uploading your contacts through the Meta Accounts Center is still the default method for it.

Keep your eyes on our blog site, though! We’ll keep you updated on Instagram’s latest features, including any upcoming methods for how to find your contacts on Instagram.

Finding Contacts Isn’t the Only Way To Grow Your Brand on Instagram

Contact syncing is an awesome way to quickly find friends on Instagram, even if all you have is their number. By uploading your contacts on Instagram, you can find more people to follow. Then, you can cross your fingers to see if they recognize your name and follow your page back. It’s a neat trick to reconnect with old pals while growing your follower count at the same time.

Of course, finding your contacts’ Instagram accounts isn’t the only way to grow and get more followers. It’s good to know how to find contacts on Instagram. But if your main goal is to get heaps of new followers, following a bunch of contacts won’t cut it. To truly, authentically grow on the platform, enlist the services of Path Social.

Our team helps bridge you and your target audience. We use promotional strategies to push out your high-quality content to people most likely to enjoy it. Your posts will hit the right people, and your page will gain new followers who are interested in your content. That means higher reach and engagement moving forward. Gain more followers with Path Social today!