If you are concerned about your privacy, you’ve got to read this. Spokeo is a free service that has boatloads of data on nearly everybody. It’s simple to use and you can see where someone lives, the front of their house, estimated income, date of birth, their family members and of course, their address and phone number. This is another tool that can be used very successfully by stalkers.
You probably don’t want to have all your information out there for people to effortlessly look up. Unlike CriminalSearches.com, you can opt-out and remove yourself from Spokeo.
How to remove your information from Spokeo:
- Go to spokeo.com and search for your name.
- Click on the listing that’s yours.
- Copy the URL which contains your listing information.
(It should look like this: http://www.spokeo.com/search?q=John%20Doe#0123456789/info)
- Go to the Spokeo Privacy page and paste in the URL you copied.
- Enter your email address and CAPTCHA and submit.
- Confirm your removal by clicking the link in your email. Pay attention because their email is tricky.
I have a vice with companies that publish sensitive information about people without their permission. Spokeo should be ashamed for their irresponsible data retention and access practices. Protect your friends from stalkers and send them this post.
Arguably, this information is already available to the public, so it’s not like they hacked it from somewhere. However, their relatively simple access to it makes it dangerous because of the fact these are where people live. And the reality is there are a hundred services just like it – sharing your data without your permission.
My only advice to Spokeo is to acquire data from sources where the person gave permission to have their information available for everyone to see. Oh, and also grow a pair and implement an opt-in data collection and retention policy. From what I can tell, Spokeo’s site is being hammered with removal requests, which is why it’s very slow … for good reason.