If You Search for Someone on Instagram, Will They Know?

Key Takeaways

  • Instagram doesn’t notify users when someone searches for them, but be careful not to open their Story, as that will alert them.
  • Unfortunately, that means Instagram doesn’t tell you who’s searching for you on the platform either.

Do you need to know if a user will find out you’ve searched for them on Instagram? Or are you trying to find out if anyone has searched for you lately? Instagram keeps things fairly simple in this regard, so you can learn all you need to know below. Let’s dive in.

Does Instagram Notify When You Search for Someone?

The straight answer to that question is no. Instagram does not notify when you search for someone, just like it doesn’t send screenshot notifications. You can look for people using Instagram’s mobile app or desktop site, and the platform won’t tell anyone you’ve searched for them.

However, while looking for someone, make sure not to open their Story. If you do so, Instagram will let the user know that you’ve watched it, and they’ll find out you’ve searched for them on the platform that way.

Can You See Who Searched for You on Instagram?

If you’re an Instagram user and you want to find out who’s searching for you on the platform, then unfortunately, the news isn’t good for you. Instagram doesn’t allow you to see who has searched for you. People can find your account, view your posts, and you won’t be notified about it. You can’t even see who has watched your Instagram videos, although the view counts will go up.

However, if someone watches your Story, you’ll find them in your Instagram Story audience list.

How to Find Someone on Instagram

Now you know you can do so without being caught, here’s how to find someone on Instagram. You can use the official Instagram platform itself or Google to find specific people.

Use Instagram’s Search Option

One way to find people on Instagram is to use the platform’s search option. This feature is available in Instagram’s mobile app as well as the desktop site. Once you access either, click or tap the search box, type the name of the person you’re looking for, and press Enter.

The search box highlighted in Instagram's mobile app.

In the search results, you’ll see a list of accounts. Tap an account to view its profile. Note that if you don’t want the person to know you’ve accessed their account, do not tap their Story, or you’ll appear in their Story’s audience list.

Use Google to Find Someone on Instagram

Another way to find people on Instagram is to use Google Search. Just like how you find anything else in Google, you can run a query to find specific people on Instagram.

To do that, launch Google Search on your mobile or desktop. Then type the name of the person you’re looking for followed by “site:instagram.com” to limit the search to Instagram.

For example, if you’re looking for Cristiano Ronaldo, type the following and press Enter:

Cristiano Ronaldo site:instagram.com

The “site” parameter excludes all other sites from appearing in the search results.

When you see the search results, click or tap them to be taken to the profile pages on Instagram.

The search box highlighted on Google.

And that’s how you find Instagram people without searching for them on the platform.

Can You See Instagram Accounts Without Logging In?

Yes, you can view Instagram accounts without logging in, but you’ll have to use a web browser on your computer. Mobile browsers won’t let you see any accounts.

In your desktop browser, paste the full link to someone’s Instagram profile page, and the profile will load. If you only know someone’s Instagram username, then in the following link, replace “USERNAME” with their username and open the link. It’ll take you to your specified person’s Instagram profile page.


Since you aren’t logged in to an account, you can’t view the user’s Story or like or comment on their posts.


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