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How to Keep Your Personal Information Off the Internet

by Kurt Knutsson

Selling your personal information found in public places is big business. The dozens of public data mining sites gladly take a few bucks from Tom, Dick and any Harry to reveal your personal details that otherwise would be a lot tougher for someone with bad intentions to gain access to.

Try searching for yourself on any number of these sites that take your life super public and you’ll likely see your home address, date of birth, relatives and their addresses, and personal email addresses. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg within the free results. Pay a few dollars and now anyone can get your complete life history.

Surprisingly, there is something you can do about it. While in many cases, you have no legal right and there remains no federal laws or regulations protecting you, a vast majority of the public data mining sites offer the ability for you to opt-out. It would be much easier if there were federal laws against this kind of invasion of privacy. People who work for these fraudulent companies could blow the whistle on the federal law being broken, using a whistleblower attorney to guide the way. Until then, though, their motivation is likely a PR move to fend off regulation.

Some of the data mining sites make it easy to remove yourself where as others are a royal pain in the rear end. That’s why services have popped-up that will remove your personal details for you rather than the DIY method that can be tedious and time consuming.


1) Decide whether you want to DIY Delete or use one of several deleting services
2) Each public data mining site is different in their opt-out policy. Some easier than others.
3) A drivers license, letter from a notary proving you are you, and sometimes a police report are asked to be presented
4) Understand the law. There is none unless you live in California or the public data mining site is part of a Credit Reporting service where fair credit act kicks in. This act aims to protect the use of your credit history for employment. However, if you feel aggrieved by your credit score it might be worth contacting one of the many credit reporting attorneys that operate in this area for further guidance on legal support.
5) You need a lot of time and patience.

Individual Public data broker sites opt-out pages vary in degree of difficulty to opt-out of having your personal info available to the world. For example, Lexis-Nexis and affiliated public data mining sites make it tough to opt-out by requiring documentation proving harm such as a police report substantiating identity theft, under threat of death or serious bodily harm.


One of the best guides for DIY Removal of Your Personal info from Public Data sites list: https://www.abine.com/optouts.php


DeleteMe service cost $99-129/year. They do the deleting of you personal info from public data mining sites and send a you a report every 3 months. Hands down it’s the best I’ve tried.


And while this service along with others are very effective at removing your personal information, there is something that inherently bugs me about having to pay to win back some privacy and restore some security. And if the data brokers are going to profit off of your personal details in this intrusively hyper public way, then why shouldn’t we demand a cut of the profits since without you, they would have nothing to sell.

Kurt CyberGuy Knutsson how to remove your personal information from the Internet web

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mark Ainley May 12, 2015 - 1:49 am

I want to delete and entry in google search that is damaging to my reputation and preventing me from finding work, and is having a detrimental effect on my health

Alison October 15, 2015 - 6:25 am

The best way to do it is to have the site admin take the information down. Most are willing to do it I’ve found. Once the information is removed, use Google’s Removal Tool to de-index it from Google Search.

John November 8, 2015 - 10:15 pm

I found my information on this site http://www.best-tamada.com
but i can’t find any contact information so i can ask them to bring it down. They even have my DOB on it. What should i do?

Joe November 24, 2015 - 11:18 pm

is it possible to get a court case off the internet or at least off the front page of google?

Nila August 23, 2016 - 12:34 am

I just searched my website and found along with my website, my full name, my previous address, my phone number, my personal email address, and my ip address on this website. A site is allowed to do that? How do I remove it? I feel so unsafe knowing that ALL my personal information is out there publicly. Fortunately I moved and I’m going to change my number soon, but that’s still crazy!

Anonymous March 10, 2017 - 3:12 pm

This is crazy. My home address everywhere to be found and I have a stalker who’s a serious life threat. This is so wrong. We cannot post information, pictures, etc without permission, so why can they? We should have to OPT IN before they can give out info. And private home address should never ever be published so widely. It is not just a matter of privacy, but a matter of safety, especially to single women. I can smell class action law suit, can you?

Pat Rasmussen October 11, 2017 - 5:09 pm

There have to be privacy laws constructed by Congress. I personally was the victim of identity theft , and fear gor my life because that criminal will be getting out of jail soon. I cannot pull up one site without my info coming up. It is so unbelievable these companies can make money “off our private info” with no consent. Also I AM SURE the defend me sites are owned by tbe public info sites..how can we regulate our info like Hippa..?


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