Luckily, Instagram does not notify the original poster when someone has screenshotted their story. This means you can screenshot the desired story as many times as you want and the original poster will be none the wiser. This also means that other people can screenshot your stories without your knowledge.
This rule applies whether you’re taking a screenshot on your phone on the app or your desktop.
Instagram used to notify users when screenshots of their stories were taken back in 2018, but they have since removed that feature. However, they can always revert this feature in the future, so be sure to check before taking screenshots.
Another reason why you shouldn’t be too screenshot-happy on Instagram is that the app does send users screenshot alerts for other features, such as Vanish Mode.
Vanishing Mode is a feature that allows users to send temporary videos and photos via DM. The media stays up until they have been opened by the recipient, and once the recipient closes out of the video or photo, it self-destructs and cannot be viewed again. If the recipient tries to screenshot the files, the sender is notified in 2 ways:
- A hatched circle appears next to the files
- The DM summary will say the word “Screenshot” along with how long ago the screenshot attempt happened
How to Turn on Vanish Mode
Vanish Mode can be enabled on your settings. Here’s how you can activate it:
- Open the Instagram app.
- Tap the chat button on the top right corner of your screen.
- Pick a chat you want to turn on Vanishing Mode in.
- Swipe up to turn on Vanish Mode.
- To turn off Vanish Mode by swiping up again or tapping “Turn off vanish mode” at the top of the chat.
If someone sends you a DM in Vanish Mode, Instagram will notify you. Before taking a screenshot, always check if the media was sent through Vanish Mode. Vanish Mode is the only feature Instagram will give you a notification for if the content is screenshotted, but this may change in the future.
For their privacy and safety, Instagram urges its users to only use Vanish Mode with people they trust. Even if the recipient can’t take a screenshot discreetly, they can always take a picture using another device before the file gets deleted. Instagram also fails to notify people when a screenshot of a Vanish Mode message gets taken in a web browser.
Whether you’re trying to see who takes screenshots of your uploads or you’re trying to discreetly save a picture, Instagram does not notify users. The only exception is Vanish Mode messages, and even this can be bypassed when using Instagram on a web browser. This is why you need to be very careful about what you post on your account and to whom you send private messages.