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How To View Private Facebook Profiles & Pictures

If you aren’t mutual Facebook friends, there are restrictions on what you can see in someone’s profile due to Facebook’s privacy settings. We’ll go over some of the options and legalities in this article, regardless of why you want to reveal private Facebook content.

There are numerous third-party apps and websites that claim to have access to private accounts. Unfortunately, many of these do not work, and many are scams attempting to obtain your personal information or money. It’s always a “Buyer Beware” scenario in these situations.

Can a Lawyer Subpoena Facebook?

Obtaining the information you require from a lawyer, whether for a divorce or another civil case, can be difficult. Because Facebook is protected by federal law, they are not required to comply with a civil subpoena. According to Facebook, you may obtain some basic information about a private Facebook account, but you will not receive messages, photos, or content from posts.

Facebook cooperates with law enforcement agencies and will provide information if warrants or court orders are issued. Unless it involves the safety of a child, the company does not charge the agency for this information.

Facebook’s Privacy

The program has adopted a four-tier system where users can set their preferred profile privacy level:

  • If you’re friends with someone, you can generally see everything they’ve posted online, with the exception of posts they’ve chosen to hide from you.
  • You can see most of what someone has online if you aren’t friends with them but their profile is public.
  • You won’t be able to see anything other than their existence on Facebook and their main profile photo if you aren’t friends with someone and their profile is private.
  • Finally, regardless of their other privacy settings, if you completely block someone, they won’t be able to see anything (including that you exist).

You won’t be able to see much if the profile you want to look at is private. You will not see the user on Facebook if they have blocked you, regardless of their privacy settings. Although, in Facebook Messenger, their messages are accompanied by a static “User” profile picture.

Despite the privacy settings, there used to be a technical flaw in the Facebook site that allowed you to get at least some of the information you wanted. Previously, you could see some of a person’s timeline and images by manipulating a Facebook profile URL with their name, but this exploit has been fixed.

Other similar flaws in Facebook’s armor, such as the ability to access private Facebook images using a Facebook graph URL or the ability to use third-party tools to bypass Facebook’s own privacy controls, have all been patched and sealed.

The “Brute Force” Method

Paying a data broker for someone’s profile information is probably the simplest and quickest way to get it. This could be a private investigator, an online investigation service, or a skilled hacker using Dark Web data.

This route does not have every profile, but it does have a lot of them. The disadvantage? There are a few. One is that you’re working with someone who may be breaking the law and depending on your location, you may also be breaking the law. This method is not recommended if you’re trying to gain access to a Facebook profile as evidenced in a legal case.

Another disadvantage is that no one does such work for free; you will have to pay for the information you require. This is typically just a snapshot of the profile and does not give you permanent access to the account’s activity.

Finally, even if you pay, there’s no guarantee that you’ll get the results you want. The information in the user’s profile may be outdated or irrelevant to your search.

The Charm Offensive

You can gain access by sending a friend request to the person in question, depending on your relationship with them. Although it may seem self-evident, this is the most effective way to view a private profile.

What can you do if you think that won’t work (either because they don’t know you or because they don’t consider you a friend)? Aside from becoming Facebook friends, there are a few other options.

If you have the individual’s profile information, you can look up any groups or close friends for more information.

You want to become involved with the subject person’s groups and close friends because you might have legitimate interactions with them. You can familiarize the subject person with your online persona, present yourself as a good and worthy Facebook friend, and eventually wind up on their Friends list through those interactions. Here are some guidelines to follow.


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