Recent scandals with Facebook’s data protection policies have left many users feeling betrayed by the social networking giant, which has been facing accusations of failing to protect personal information from third-party use. Deleting your Facebook account is the best and most permanent way to protect your data from prying eyes. So how exactly is it done? This guide walks you through the steps to...
Twitter connects millions of people worldwide. Along with Facebook and Instagram, the short news service, which started up in 2006, is undoubtedly one of the best-known and widest-reaching social media platforms. Tweets are the perfect way to share your thoughts and daily experiences with the world – no matter what time of day or place. To not disappoint your followers, it’s normal to tweet several times a day and maybe even reveal some personal information. This is not only stored on the web, but also on the company’s servers, so having doubts about the state of data protection is totally justified.
If you don’t want to accept the consequences from this uncertain data protection situation, or you want to retreat from the platform entirely, then you have no choice but to delete your Twitter account. But how do you delete your account correctly? And what do you need to bear in mind?
Twitter account: What is the difference between deactivating and deleting?
If you have previously thought about deleting your account and started to take the necessary steps, you might have seen that there is also the option to deactivate the account. This is by no means an alternative option to deleting your account, but rather the preliminary step you have to take so that your profile can be properly deleted. During the deactivation process, your display name, your @ username, and your public profile will no longer be visible to others. After 30 days, everything (including all other data such as tweets, photos, etc.) will be permanently deleted.
This option differs from permanently deleting your account, since you are able to reactivate your deactivated account within 30 days. All account information and content, which has been published on your timeline, will be visible again and available to everyone.
Optional archiving of tweets, images, etc.
If you’ve decided to retire your Twitter career, you can initiate the deletion process yourself. You don’t need to make an official request or get into direct contact with the microblogging service support team. Before you start, however, you should ask yourself whether you want to archive everything you’ve done for sentimental reasons. This means that, at a later date, you will be able to view all photos, texts, and tweets that you published from your account. The short message service doesn’t save backups on its own servers, giving you total control over the locally stored memories, since you can choose the device they should be saved on.
If you are interested in archiving, you can request the data by accessing your profile settings and clicking on “Account” -> “Content” -> “Your Tweet archive.” You will then receive an e-mail containing the archive files in ZIP format.
Step by step: how do I delete my Twitter account?
If you have already saved your data locally or are not interested in archiving it at all, you can delete your Twitter profile whenever you’re ready. Like the “tweet archive” request described above, this works via the profile settings. However, you need to access the platform’s website on a desktop computer since it’s not possible to delete your account using the iOS and Android mobile app, however you can deactivate it this way.
Step 1: access the Twitter site and log in
For the first step, visit Twitter’s website using your desired web browser. Click on the “log in” button and enter the login information for the Twitter account that you want to delete. If you’ve forgotten your password, you can click on “Forgot password?”. Then you must enter your e-mail address, telephone number, or username connected to this account. Twitter will then e-mail you all the information you need to reset your password.
Step 2: open the “Settings and privacy” menu
In the upper menu bar, click on your thumbnail picture next to “Tweet” and select “Settings and privacy” from the menu.
Step 3: deactivating your Twitter account
You will automatically be taken to the account menu, where you can not only set your username or language and request the information that is to be archived, but can also deactivate your account. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the page to find the “Deactivate your account” button.
After clicking this button, the microblogging service will inform you of the consequences of deactivating your account. Select “Deactivate” once more to confirm you want to begin the deletion process.
You will be asked to enter your Twitter password one last time before your account is officially deactivated. As long as you don’t log in to the platform with this account in the meantime, it will be permanently deleted (as well as all user data) after the 30-day deactivation status has expired.
Instead of deleting your entire Twitter account, you can simply delete all tweets and followers as well as all personal information (including profile photo) and activate the option “Protect your Tweets.” After just a few days, users won’t be able to find relevant information about you. This way you can keep the option open to reactivate your account as needed – regardless of your length of absence.