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How To Recover Hacked Instacart Accounts [& How To Prevent]

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Key Takeaways

  • Instacart accounts can be hacked, despite robust security measures.
  • Signs of hacking include unauthorized orders, charges, or account access issues.
  • Recover by contacting Instacart, changing passwords, and monitoring finances.
  • Prevent hacking by using strong passwords, cautiously sharing information, and only using in-app support.

Yes, someone can hack your Instacart account. While Instacart, like many large companies, employs a robust security team to protect its systems and your information, no system is completely impervious to hacking.

Instacart provides security measures like passwords and authentication processes to safeguard your account. However, in the digital age, it’s challenging to anticipate every possible hacking method.

Instacart experienced a security incident in 2020, highlighting that data breaches can occur, potentially compromising personal and financial information.

Security breaches can occur through indirect methods, such as tricking users into revealing their information, so even with Instacart’s protective measures, customers should proactively safeguard their account information.

How To Tell if Your Instacart Account Got Hacked [& What to Do About Each]

If your Instacart account has been hacked, there will be some fairly obvious giveaways that will likely stand out.

Unexpected Order Notifications and Charges

After placing an order, Instacart typically sends confirmation and delivery update emails.

Hackers often make large or unusual purchases, including gift cards, which can lead to significant unauthorized charges on users’ accounts.

If you receive a confirmation email without having made any orders, it’s a sign of potential account compromise.

Additionally, if Instacart or your bank informs you of charges for orders you didn’t place, it’s another red flag that should be immediately addressed.

However, do some due diligence before immediately panicking. Customers can sometimes mistake the monthly charges for food delivery subscriptions like Instacart+ or Uber One for fraud.

If this happens to you, first reach out to Instacart to verify what the transaction is and whether or not it is a real charge.

If it is fraud, work through the process of regaining access to your account. The company will sometimes offer a refund, so ask them if this is possible.

Then, immediately contact your bank or credit card to file a fraud request. I also suggest continually monitoring your bank transactions for any unfamiliar charges.

Inability to Access Your Account

If you find yourself unable to log into your Instacart account, it could indicate a breach. Hackers often change the account’s password, preventing your access.

Once they are in your account, they’re usually try to order food and charge it to your card.

The do this by changing the delivery address and then sending the deliveries to vacant properties or areas where they can easily intercept the delivery.

If your usual password doesn’t work, I suggest first trying a password reset. If you’re able to log in one the reset is complete, look for indications that somebody else has used your account.

Hackers frequently change account details like phone numbers and email addresses, hindering account recovery. But, if you can still get in, signs of changes should be fairly obvious.

If you’re still unsuccessful, immediately contact customer service and let them know the situation. They will advice you on what to do from there.

How to Recover a Hacked Instacart Account

To recover a hacked Instacart account, follow these steps:

  1. Identify Unauthorized Activity: Look for signs of hacking, such as inability to access your account, unfamiliar charges on your credit card, or unexpected emails from Instacart about new device logins.
  2. Contact Instacart: Report the suspected hack to Instacart immediately, detailing any unusual activities or changes in your account.
  3. Attempt to Log In: If possible, try to sign in to your Instacart account.
  4. Update Security Details: Change your passwords and security questions to prevent further unauthorized access.
  5. Monitor Financial Transactions: Check your bank and credit card statements for any unauthorized transactions made through your Instacart account.
  6. Inform Your Bank: If you find fraudulent charges, contact your bank to inform them of the situation and seek their assistance.

Taking these steps promptly can help secure your account and minimize potential damages from the hack.

Tips To Prevent Your Instacart Account From Getting Hacked

You cannot personally prevent a data breach. But you can do things to make it harder for hackers to attack you, which is the most common form of hacking.

1. Use a Robust, Unique Password

To reduce the risk of your account being compromised, select a strong password that incorporates a mix of letters, numbers, and symbols. This complexity makes it more difficult for attackers to guess your password.

Additionally, updating your password every few months can help safeguard your account, especially if there’s any chance that someone might have gained unauthorized access.

2. Be Cautious with Personal Information

It’s crucial to be vigilant about who you share your personal information with.

If you receive an unsolicited call from someone claiming to be from Instacart, do not disclose any sensitive details. Instead, make a note of the call and contact Instacart directly using the official number listed on their website or through the app.

This precaution ensures that you are communicating with legitimate representatives of the company.

I like to use the free service Have I Been Pwned to track whether or not my email address has been included in a data breach.

haveibeenpwned.com screenshot homepage

Simply enter your email and every time the service finds that email in the records from a data breach, you will receive an email.

This can help keep your usernames and passwords secure and help you prevent a bunch of accounts being access if more many use the same password.

3. Utilize In-App Communication for Customer Service

For any customer service needs, use the communication feature provided within the Instacart app.

This approach guarantees that you are in contact with the appropriate Instacart personnel, reducing the risk of interacting with imposters or scammers.

Brett’s Take: Thoughts From an Expert

Many users report similar experiences, suggesting a pattern of frequent account breaches.

The recurring nature of these incidents raises questions about the effectiveness of Instacart’s security measures.

There’s a belief among some users that the hacks could be inside jobs, possibly by Instacart call center employees.

Many users express frustration over Instacart’s customer service in handling these incidents, noting a lack of proactive support and follow-up.

Some discussions differentiate between true hacking (cybercriminals breaking through security) and simpler password theft due to weak security practices by users.

Reasons Hackers Target Instacart Accounts

There are many reasons a hacker would want to find a way to get into your account:

  • Stolen identity: Getting your credit card information or social security number could mean a lot of money to a hacker. They could use it to make purchases elsewhere or sell the information to another party.
  • Free groceries: Hackers could log into your account to get some free food. They could have it delivered to another address and pick it up to prevent getting caught.
  • Causing trouble: Some hackers break into a company’s website and wreak havoc to save money and relieve boredom. They essentially hack an Instacart account because they can.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Instacart Steal Your Information?

Instacart’s privacy policy states that they do not sell users’ personal information. However, there are online claims challenging this.

Ultimately, when signing up for any service, consider the risk of your information potentially being shared and receiving unwanted communications like SPAM emails.

Can Someone Else Use My Instacart Card?

No, someone else cannot use your Instacart card directly. The “group cart” feature allows sharing of the account for joint item selection, but all purchases are charged to the primary card on the account. You may need to collect payment separately from other users.

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