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How To: See Locked Private Profile Picture on Facebook


Long back, security experts and hackers found a serious security flaw on Facebook which allowed them to view private photos on Facebook with a small tweak. Facebook security flawed in that. Developers started to develop browser scripts which allowed people to see locked private profile pictures. A locked profile picture refers to a one which cannot be viewed in theater view or enlarged view. People even can’t comment on it. This privacy holds good when a person doesn’t wants to share a high resolution photo what he uploads.

People want to have privacy on their photos. There are people who keep pictures as their profile picture that does not contain pictures of them. That may be purely due to privacy of their own self. But still if they think that they want people to find them easily, then they should have their own picture as their profile picture. It is lucky for such people that Facebook provides a privacy feature to make a profile picture private.

As Facebook have common type of URLs everywhere for photos, it made me to guess the public URL of the enlarged URL of the locked profile picture. By changing some parts in URL, we can view the picture in enlarged form. All you need is to, learn the structure of two URLs. One is the short 160 x 160 px image which you will see this on people’s timeline. The other is, the public URL of the same image which is enlarged. This enlarged image will be in the full resolution what the profile owner has uploaded.

The below is the structure of an enlarged profile URL.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-fb/123456_123456789012345_1234567890_n.jpg

The last part of the profile picture determines some property of your picture. The letter n which is defined before the extension of the image determines the size of the picture whether the public URL refers to a thumbnail or full size image. The n can be replaced with the letter t to view the thumbnail sized image. Each picture on Facebook is determined by a unique ID by Facebook. The number 123456789012345 determines the actual fbid of a picture.

When we copy the public URL of the image i a locked profile picture, the URL will be twisted somewhat like the one below which contains the size of the image too.

https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c154.33.412.412/s160x160/12345_123456789012345_1234567890_n.jpg

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Facebook has hosted images at Akamai for making the site to be more faster while loading. If you wonder why Facebook is so fast that any other site when it contains many elements on their site, then this will be the answer.

To view a locked private profile picture on Facebook, you just need to change some elements in the public URL of the image. Here are the steps to view a locked private profile picture.

Step 1: Go to your friend’s timeline whose profile picture cannot be enlarged. That is, one who have kept their Privacy Settings to “Only Me”.

Step 2: Right click on their profile picture and click on Copy image URL.

View locked profile picture on facebook

Step 3: Copy the image URL and paste in a text editor like Notepad.

Step 4: Remove the following part of the URL in the image URL you have copied.

https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c154.33.412.412/s160x160/

And, replace them with the following:

http://sphotos-c.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn1/

If the above URL string doesn’t work, try with the below.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-cryptlife/

Step 5: The last part of the picture URL will be always the same. Now, just launch the URL which you have made changes. You will be getting the full size of the image that is locked or made private.

I don’t know why Facebook should provide a public URL for all pictures but it will be nice if this flaw is fixed.

Share your thoughts here. If you have any comments or queries, please comment below. Do not forget to share this URL.



  • http://www.digitaladvices.com/ Vivek Nath.R

    Bro, this is quite interesting trick.

  • Selem

    Awesome :p

  • Venkat

    Nice trick. Facebook uses many predefined image sizes. Like we can replace n with ‘o’ for larger one if any. ‘a’ for profile pic size. Etc…

  • tatia

    i don’t understand,please help me.!

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Okay, let me say this in brief.
      1. Copy Image URL of the locked profile picture as shown in the above picture (in the post).
      2. Paste that URL in Notepad.
      3. Replace https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c154.33.412.412/s160x160/ with https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-cryptlife/
      5. Now, copy and paste the URL in the web browser’s address bar. You are done!

  • Mit Prajapti

    Hi, Arjun.

    I am not test this tutorial. but now in this day is this work perfectly can u tell me plz.

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Yes, it works fine now. You can test it.

  • Arthur

    It doesn’t seem to work for images that have only 5 digits in the first set of numbers in their url. I get Service Unavaliable.

  • Dom

    Doesn’t work.

  • Cas

    Works perfectly. Just tried it on a locked profile!

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Cheers!

  • easy

    same result when you just remove “s160x160” from the URL

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      That’s okay! But please provide your original name. No one can do anything with the name. :)

  • Karan

    Awesome 😀
    I’m your Fan Dude 😀

  • des

    what if you want to see pictures that arent displayed at all but you know they are there because it tells you there are more

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      No. We don’t have a trick to view such pictures. If such bug prevails on Facebook, it may spoil people’s privacy. Facebook should be knowing about this.

  • roxy

    it’s not working, it says Service Unavailable – DNS failure
    tried it in chrome and IE.

    • Koji

      yeah, agreed. 2 days ago it was okay, but now “Service Unavailable – DNS failure” :/

  • Acip

    worked perfectly.. thanks. then how to view private pictures in an album.. say profile pictures album has 20 pics but when u click it shows only one pic.. Thank you..

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Hi, You cannot view private profile picture album completely but you can view the active private profile picture with full resolution (what he/she has uploaded).

  • John

    Roxy, just remove “s160x160/”. Does the exact same thing, only it works.

  • Aley

    not working.. says DNS failure

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      I don’t know why some people say that it works and some do not. It works perfectly on profiles which I have tried but still, try an alternative method.

      Step 1: Go to the person’s timeline.
      Step 2: Copy the Profile Picture URL. (Right click and choose Copy image URL. Do not copy the URL from address bar of your browser)
      Step 3: Paste the copied URL in a notepad or any text editor.
      Step 4: Open his or her cover picture in theater view.
      Step 5: Copy the image URL. (Right click and choose Copy image URL. Do not copy the URL from address bar of your browser)
      Step 6: Paste them in the same notepad.
      Step 7: Now it’s time to modify cover picture URL. Just copy the last part of the profile picture URL and replace in the last part of the cover picture URL.
      Step 8: Now copy-paste the modified URL in the browser’s address bar and hit enter to view the profile picture.

      Please notify me whether this alternative method works or not.

    • Pikou

      your image adress must look something like this
      https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-frc3/c0.17.180.180/s160x160/xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx_a.jpg

      then you must change this part
      https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-frc3/c0.17.180.180/s160x160
      with this part
      http://sphotos-c.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn1
      and then replace the last
      _a.jpg
      with
      _n.jpg

      Thank me later.

  • Asif Khan

    Arjun yeah thnx the last method work very good.. but it only show the profile picture not the rest of the pictures included in that album…how can u see full private album pics..?

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      As of now, we can’t view the full profile picture album which is private. You can only view the picture at full resolution with this trick. If such tricks are available, I’ll post here on this blog. Please stay tuned.

  • Ungureanu Raducu

    Hi , thanks for this tutorial , unfortunately your method didn’t help me , but I got a easier way to see locked profile pictures .

    First of all you will need a profile picture id , let’s say as an example this : 31456932_12734583583276066_204699662_n.jpg ( the id is random so you can’t work with it ) . You can get it by using Copy URL option .

    Once you are done with that , take this link : “http://sphotos-c.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn1”

    Now open a new tab in your browser , paste the URL given and then add the respective photo id . So it will look like this : http://sphotos-c.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn1/31456932_12734583583276066_204699662_n.jpg .

    Now you will get the full photo resolution 😀 ! For me it worked I hope it will work for you too ! Thanks for reading :] !

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Thank you Ungureanu! Thanks for sharing. You are awesome! The problem is that Akamai hosts pictures on different sub domains and thus it works on some profiles and in some, it doesn’t but people can choose this sub domain too to try out on their friend’s profiles. And again Thanks, I have updated the URL string above so that people can choose from two alternatives.

    • babar

      hey i didnt understand it can you plz tell me some easy way?

  • Fábio

    This work great.
    If all images are public with certain links, there is like a script that download all images from https://fbcdn-sphotos-(a,b,c,d,…)-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-(ash1, ash2, prn1…)/xxxxx_xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx_xxxxxxxxxx_n.jpg ?
    or is it hard to get a valid xxxxx_xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx_xxxxxxxxxx?

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Yes. The last part is the hard thing to get.

  • Mindis evil

    Thanks for the information share… However it didnt worked for me so here is what i did.

    Lets say you got below URL.
    fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c154.33.412.412/s160x160/12345_123456789012345_1234567890_n.jpg

    Now as you said in your post there are photo attributes in here hence with the little concentration you can say that the size of photo which is locked is s160x160 where s stands for small i guess :-)

    Just remove it and paste the URL without that, You will see nice big photo which is locked.

    fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-prn1/c154.33.412.412/12345_123456789012345_1234567890_n.jpg

    Hope it would simply the stuff you wanna do.. Keep exploring.

    Regards,
    MINDIS Evil.

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Thank you for sharing with us. You’re awesome.

  • Nazeer

    thanku guyz i want to see whole album of profile how could i access …

  • swapnil sonkar

    itz better u download fb photo zoom, it will automatically zoom the photo to itz original size, incase u want to save d photo, press the print screen button and paste it in paint and crop the additional stuff, then save it :)

  • Paris

    this works great! How do I see private album photos or private timeline? If any of you guys here ever crack that stuff, please share with us here =P thanks all =D

  • RAHULR

    Hi Arjun
    How can i access pvt photos when there is no coverage image ? and has only profile photo.

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      You can get the cover picture link from other profile. You just need to get the structure of cover picture URL. You may depend on any profile for that.

  • Chris

    fb photo zoom and hover over the photo, right click and save

  • karar ali

    but what if I wanted to see the person other profile PICs ? plz help

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Other private profile pictures are still locked. We can only get the active one which the person has set as his/her profile picture. But we are looking forward to view more profile pictures. We will post on this blog once we’ve found. please stay tuned. :)

  • Sanan

    Arjun Bhai what about the hidden pictures in albums please tell me

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      All pictures in the album cannot be viewed using this trick. If Facebook had such serious bugs, it may become a serious privacy issues to people around the world. We suspect that Facebook should be clever in hiding pictures on the album. If any such methods are available, we will post here, in this blog. Please stay tuned.

  • balodero

    Greatest trick ever … love it
    hope u get us a trick to view the whole profile pics album … that will be amazing

  • Tom

    remember the little c in teh url means the image is cropped, even if it look big it is still cropped a bit, change the c to an l (small L) and you get full non cropped size.

    A better and faster method I use is this one.

    Here is the url you have to use:
    graph.facebook.com/PROFILE ID/picture?width=2000&height=2000

    Now replace the PROFILE ID text with the users profile ID, like if I go to Bill Clintons FB page it says this in the address billclinton?fref=ts – remove the “?fref=ts” part so that you only have “billclinton” – now use that in the link above where it says PROFILE ID and voila.

    Sometimes a users profile ID contains a mix of numbers instead, depends how they set up their profile.

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Thank you for sharing. :)

    • Anna

      Man..! I was stucked in some helluva trouble.. my case was hell unique. no trick was working… but finally after hours of trouble your way worked.. thanks ALOT man..!

      • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

        That’s great! Sounds fantastic!

  • jack scott

    is there any way to do it from mobile.?

  • dhruv

    HOW TO VIEW THE COMMENTS BELOW THE PICTURE?

  • Aravind

    Hy bro, i need your help to unlock one’s photo,,, give me a message to my email and i will tell you the details… thanks

  • dhanesh

    picture size little bit enlarged not full size,, do u have another way to make it full size image?

  • Anonymous

    yeah it works well done bro good job..
    but how to see someone’s private albums which don’t contain any thumbnail

  • athul

    my gf hide her picture on fb.. so i cant see the picture what to do… pls help me

  • wath

    Thanks man. It is working.

  • David

    Its not working for me. can you explain again

  • David

    i’m trying to get access to the private photo album

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      For your kind information, this trick won’t be available to view a private photo album. This trick just reveals the active private profile picture in full size.

  • David

    send me an message to my email so I can explain to you

  • hamza

    plz tell me ,, how we can increase the size of private image after open in new tab or doi ng all this as u explain

  • hamza

    as pic open ,,,,but its so small soo how we can

  • Simar

    Initially replacing some part of image url worked extremely well.. but now it is not working on any image also on the same image i applied this method.. please help

  • preeta

    so no way to view private albums ??/ :( plz find out dat :(

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Sure. We are looking for it. We’ll post once when we’ve found. Stay tuned.

  • Adnan Anwar

    I use all above tricks but no one is working.The reason is the URL is not matching the URL you given so i request you to please according to present URL give anyother trick.Thanku so much

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      The present way that Facebook deals with such pictures is that, they have added an additional attribute that checks for the owner of the photo. This is why, it doesn’t work. However, we are looking for a new trick!

  • Sal

    not working bro

  • hisham

    1-Get the username or user ID from his/her timeline URL.
    2-Click on this URL http://graph.facebook.com/USERNAME/picture?width=2000&height=2000.
    3-Replace ‘USERNAME’ with the his/her username.
    4-Hit ENTER, and there you go.

    • http://www.cryptlife.com/ Arjun

      Thanks for sharing the developer way to view pictures. Unfortunately, Facebook now requires an access token to view such details.