Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Internet is Scary.

Recently, while attempting to internet stalk my missing cousin, I discovered some frightening things about the internet. Not only did the magical internet find lots of records for my cousin, but it knew we were related. When I clicked on my own name, I was even more disturbed to see how much the internet knows about me.

There are a number of directory "aggregate" sites which compile information about you. I am currently in the process of deleting my name and info from as many sites as possible. One of the scariest is called spokeo.com. This website knows your age, your address (and any prior addresses). It knows your relatives, your phone number, and scariest of all, it shows a google image of your house. It also tells your credit score and the value of your home. It's disturbing. So far I have discovered this is the way to remove yourself from spokeo.com


Here's how to remove your name:
  1. Go to Spokeo.com and type in your name.
  2. Copy the URL when it brings up your information
  3. Go to the bottom of the page and click on "privacy"
  4. Paste the URL in the box provided
  5. Include your email address (it gives you further instructions via email)
  6. Enter the code
  7. Go to your email and click on the link they provide to you
  8. Confirm the directory listing has been deleted
  9. Go back to Spokeo.com and put in your name to be sure it was deleted
Do yourself a favor and start googling yourself. So far I have removed myself from mylife.com and spokeo. I am in the process of trying to remove myself from peekyou.com

I am learning quickly that there is an endless supply of information about me on the internet. If all these "aggregate" sites are getting all my info there must be more out there than I will ever know about. 


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