Fixing Instagram‘s "Sorry there was a problem with your request" Login Error – An In-Depth Troubleshooting Guide

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Seeing the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error when trying to log into Instagram leaves many users frustrated and confused. You enter your credentials as normal, expecting to scroll through your feed or DM your friends, only to be met with a vague error message blocking access to your account.

If you‘ve encountered this pesky Instagram login issue, you‘re definitely not alone. Based on searches and social media complaints, it seems thousands of users have been randomly locked out of their accounts by this error.

In this comprehensive troubleshooting guide, we‘ll walk through why you get this error, the risks of leaving it unresolved, and most importantly, over a dozen methods to fix the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” issue on Instagram.

Why Do I See the "Sorry there was a problem with your request" Error on Instagram?

To understand why users get temporarily blocked by this error message, it helps to know how Instagram‘s security systems work behind the scenes.

Over the years, Instagram has ramped up efforts to detect bot accounts and suspicious activity on its platform. The company uses advanced machine learning systems to analyze account behavior patterns and identify potential threats.

While important for security, these proactive blocking measures sometimes flag legitimate users by mistake. Even actions like logging in from an unusual location or new device can trigger an IP block by Instagram‘s algorithms.

According to Instagram’s help pages, the most common reasons for the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error are:

  • Too many login attempts – If you entered an incorrect password several times in a short period, Instagram‘s systems temporarily block your IP address as a precaution.

  • Unusual activity – Logging in from a new location, device or network can appear suspicious and cause an IP block.

  • Server issues – Heavy traffic or technical problems with Instagram‘s systems can sometimes result in this login error.

  • Wrongly flagged account – Once in a while, Instagram‘s bot detection inaccurately flags a legitimate account as suspicious resulting in login blocks.

Essentially, the app blocks your IP address temporarily to prevent potential unauthorized logins. But this well-intended security measure mistakenly locks out many genuine users. The good news is that this block is usually short-lived and can be bypassed in most cases.

Why You Should Fix This Error Quickly

Being unable to access your Instagram account can certainly be annoying. But beyond just locking you out of scrolling and posting, there are a few risks if the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error persists for too long:

  • Account security – With you blocked from your account, it leaves the door open for hackers to try brute forcing their way in.

  • Missed notifications – You could miss important direct messages, comments, tags, and other notifications.

  • Hurts influencer brand – For bloggers, artists and influencers, an inactive Instagram account loses followers, credibility and earning potential.

  • FOMO – Being locked out means you miss what friends, family and favorite celebrities are posting while you‘re unable to access Instagram.

  • Can‘t manage account – You‘re unable to update settings, edit profile, post stories, respond to comments or do any account management.

While Instagram‘s team works in the background to resolve login errors, it could take days or even weeks to regain access without taking action. That‘s why it‘s important to proactively try fixes to bypass the block yourself.

Method #1: Switch Between WiFi and Mobile Data

One of the simplest ways to deal with the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error is to switch the network your phone is using and retry logging into Instagram.

If you were on WiFi, turn off WiFi and connect to mobile data instead. If you were using mobile data, connect to a WiFi network.

The logic here is that Instagram‘s IP block is applying only to your current network, so switching networks essentially gives your phone a fresh new IP address.

Here are step-by-step instructions to toggle your network on both iPhone and Android devices:

On iPhone:

  1. From your home screen, swipe down from the top edge of the screen to open Control Center.

  2. Long press the WiFi or mobile data icon to toggle it on or off. Grey background means disabled.

iPhone WiFi Control Center

On Android:

  1. Open Settings and tap Network & internet > WiFi.

  2. Turn WiFi on or off using the toggle switch.

  3. You can also go to Settings > Network & internet > Mobile network to enable mobile data.

Once you’ve switched networks, force quit the Instagram app, restart it and try logging in again. Many users have success accessing their account this way.

However, some find the error persists when they switch back to their original network. Luckily there are a few other tricks to get around Instagram‘s IP blocks.

Method #2: Reset Your Instagram Password

Resetting your account password can also help resolve the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error for many locked out users.

Here are the steps to reset your password on Instagram:

  1. Open the Instagram app and tap Forgot Password below the login form.

  2. Enter the email, phone number or username linked to your account and tap Next.

  3. Instagram sends a 6-digit confirmation code to your email or phone number.

  4. Input the code Instagram sent and tap Next.

  5. Create a new password and tap OK.

  6. Log in to Instagram with your new password.

The key is entering that confirmation code, as it essentially overrides the IP block temporarily. But for some, the code never arrives, leading to the next fix…

Method #3: Verify Your Phone Number

If the confirmation code didn‘t come through when you tried resetting your password, you likely need to verify your phone number first.

Here‘s how to do that:

  1. On a desktop browser, visit and log into your account.

  2. Go to your profile and click Edit Profile.

  3. In the Contact Info section, enter your phone number if not already added.

  4. Click Submit to save changes.

  5. Go back to your profile and click Confirm Phone Number.

  6. Instagram texts you a confirmation code – enter it.

Verifying your number associates it directly with your account in Instagram‘s systems. Once confirmed, the code needed to reset your password should come through when requested in the app.

Method #4: Try Logging in Through Facebook

If you had previously connected your Instagram account to Facebook, you can try logging in through Facebook to bypass the error:

  1. Visit on a desktop browser.

  2. Click Log in with Facebook below the login form.

  3. Enter your Facebook credentials when prompted.

  4. Click OK to connect your Facebook account to Instagram.

Since this logs you in through Facebook‘s systems, it avoids the IP block that Instagram imposed. However, if you no longer have access to the Facebook account, this method won‘t work.

Method #5: Use Instagram‘s Support Form

Sending an inquiry to Instagram‘s support team is another option for resolving the persistent login error. Here‘s how to contact them:

  1. Open your browser and go to

  2. Enter your Instagram username in the form.

  3. Click Email to select the email address associated with your account.

  4. Share details about the “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error in the box provided.

  5. Check the box confirming you‘re having a login issue.

  6. Enter the security code displayed or click to hear it.

  7. Click Submit to send the support request.

While Instagram‘s support has a reputation for delayed and unhelpful replies, reporting your login error persists in their systems. Also share any unsuccessful troubleshooting steps as it helps their team investigate the issue.

Method #6: Update the Instagram App

An outdated version of the Instagram app could also be the source of login headaches. Ensure you‘re running the latest version:

On iPhone:

  1. Go to the App Store and tap your profile icon in the top right.

  2. Scroll down and tap Available Updates.

  3. If Instagram appears, tap Update to install the latest version.

On Android:

  1. Open the Play Store and tap the menu button ≡ in the top left.

  2. Tap My apps & games.

  3. Under Updates, check if Instagram needs an update and click Update if available.

The developers constantly release fixes and security patches with each new version. Updating eliminates any app bugs that could be interfering with login.

Method #7: Clear Cache and App Data

An accumulation of outdated Instagram data on your phone may also contribute to the login error. Clearing this data forces a fresh start:

On iPhone:

  1. Go to Settings > Instagram.

  2. Tap Clear Cache and then tap Clear All Website Data.

On Android:

  1. Open device Settings > Apps > Instagram.

  2. Tap Storage > Clear Cache and Clear Data.

After clearing app data, power your phone off completely and turn it back on. Then launch Instagram to retry logging in. Removing old temporary data and restarting your device flushes out any problematic files or settings.

Method #8: Try Connecting Through a VPN

Virtual private networks (VPNs) give you a new virtual IP address that may bypass Instagram‘s block:

  1. Install a trusted VPN app like NordVPN or ExpressVPN on your device.

  2. Connect to a server in a different location.

  3. Launch the Instagram app and attempt to log in.

By funneling your traffic through an encrypted tunnel to a different server, a VPN masks your real IP and gives your device a fresh slate. Worth trying if other methods fail.

Method #9: Uninstall and Reinstall the App

If you‘ve attempted all other troubleshooting tips without success, completely removing and reinstalling Instagram is a last resort:

  1. Delete the Instagram app from your phone.

  2. Download the app again from the App Store/Play Store.

  3. When prompted, enter your username and password to log in.

Removing the app erases any problematic cached data that could be interrupting the login process. After reinstalling the latest version, you essentially get a clean slate.

Pro Tip: Use Airplane Mode to Force a Fresh IP Address

Tech bloggers share that turning on Airplane Mode on your phone forces it to disconnect from the network and grab a new IP when reconnecting. Here‘s how to try it:

  1. Enable Airplane Mode on your phone. This cuts all connections.

  2. Wait about a minute, then turn Airplane Mode off.

  3. Your device will reconnect and pull a fresh IP address.

  4. Launch Instagram and attempt logging in again.

Since Instagram blocked your previous IP, new airplane mode IP may do the trick.

Contacting Instagram Support – Key Details to Share

While Instagram‘s support team has a reputation for unhelpful automated responses, contacting them through their help site is worth a try.

To improve your chances of assistance, provide as many key details as possible including:

  • Your full Instagram username

  • Email/phone number on your Instagram account

  • When the problem started happening

  • Exact wording of the error message

  • Troubleshooting steps attempted like resetting password, reinstalling the app, switching networks

  • Whether the issue is persistent or intermittent

  • How urgent gaining account access is for you

The more info you provide, the better chance it will be properly escalated and investigated by someone on Instagram‘s team. Be patient but persistent following up if needed.

Why You Shouldn‘t Try Logging in Too Frequently

We know how tempting it is to keep trying to log into your Instagram over and over when faced with the annoying “Sorry there was a problem with your request” message.

However, be cautious not to attempt accessing your account too frequently as it can make the problem worse. Here‘s why hammering away will backfire:

  • Excessive login attempts can further trigger Instagram‘s bot detection, prolonging your block.

  • Rapid logins from one IP look very suspicious, signaling a potential malicious bot.

  • Nonstop activity gives Instagram less chance to naturally lift restrictions between tries.

  • You risk getting your account disabled permanently if flagged as a security threat.

For best results, space out your login attempts every couple hours at minimum to avoid falsely appearing like a bot. This gives you the highest chance of slipping back into your account while not re-triggering blocks.

Are Third-Party Instagram Unlock Services Legit?

In their desperation to access their accounts, some blocked users turn to third-party unlock services that claim they can restore access. These services ask for payment in exchange for supposed inside fixes.

However, beware that most of these Instagram unlock services are scams. Even well-meaning companies have no special power to bypass login errors for you.

Rather than wasting money on shady services, your best bet is methodically trying the fixes outlined in this guide. Combining multiple troubleshooting steps is key to slipping past Instagram‘s bot defenses.

Why Instagram‘s Login Security Is a Double-Edged Sword

It‘s important to note that the overly sensitive login blocking system causing headache for so many is well-intended at its core.

Instagram is just being (maybe overly) proactive detecting potential bot and hacking threats by temporarily restricting suspicious access.

Of course, the downside is many legitimate users get inadvertently caught in this security net just trying to access their accounts normally.

The platform definitely still needs improvement balancing enhanced protection with user experience and access. But increased login scrutiny is the unfortunate tradeoff for trying to keep a billion users‘ accounts more secure.

In Summary: Persistence Is Key to Resolving Instagram‘s Login Error

To recap, the generic “Sorry there was a problem with your request” error appears when Instagram has temporarily blocked your IP address or device due to perceived suspicious activity.

While frustrating, this error can be resolved in most cases by taking the following steps:

  • Switching between mobile data and WiFi
  • Resetting your password
  • Verifying your linked phone number
  • Logging in through Facebook
  • Updating the Instagram app
  • Clearing cache and app data
  • Trying a VPN connection
  • Uninstalling and reinstalling Instagram
  • Contacting Instagram support

The key is carefully trying multiple different approaches if one method doesn‘t work right away. Persistence and regularly varying tactics are vital to slipping through Instagram‘s bot detection systems.

Has any combination of these 12 troubleshooting tips successfully resolved the pesky "Sorry there was a problem with your request" error for you? Let us know in the comments below!


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.