Maintaining Privacy from data brokers

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blueman457
Posts: 411
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2015 12:19 pm

Maintaining Privacy from data brokers

Post by blueman457 » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:00 pm

All,

I had knew these websites existed, but I came across https://www.usphonebook.com/ the other day when I was doing a reverse phone look up. It was rather disturbing how much information was readily available and accurate. Using a name or phone number, it can pull your current and historical home addresses, personal cell number, email addresses, and relatives. Doing some reading online, there are several dozen different data brokers, some of which you can opt out (at least not have your info easily accessible). The data for this comes from different sources: voter registrations, USPS, credit agencies, and others.

Compared to the singular old school phone book, which you could opt out of, there is an growing number of data brokers. I know you can't beat them, but at least I could put up a fight. I am a medical professional in a high-risk field, so I really don't want patient's families being able to find me or my family that easily.

#1. Are there any good resources to read to help protect my data online?
#2. I expect to move soon, and read that I should just set up an PO BOX (USPS but commercial seems more private) and use that address as much as possible. Is that true?
#3. Also, I've read that putting your primary residence (pre-purchase) in an LLC will help keep your name from being associated with you home in the public land files. Are there significant disadvantages to that?
#4. There are services that get you off of these data brokerages for a fee ($50-$500 a month). It know it seems like extortion, but has anyone had experience with these firms like deleteme, privacyduck, etc...?

Blue Man

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Pajamas
Posts: 6015
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: Maintaining Privacy from data brokers

Post by Pajamas » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:17 pm

There have been several past threads addressing some of the questions you asked that you might find helpful.

https://www.google.com/search?sitesearc ... nformation

Bottom line, it's futile to try to remove publicly-available information from the internet.

jminv
Posts: 641
Joined: Tue Jan 02, 2018 10:58 pm

Re: Maintaining Privacy from data brokers

Post by jminv » Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:39 pm

Many of these data brokers have opt out options for the type that comes up through google search. For example, for beenverified google the opt out link then it’ll ask you to find yourself, select, and it’ll remove you from future searches. You need to search ‘your name’ plus all the towns you’ve lived in on google to make sure you get rid of all the relevant info. You then need to check back periodically.

You’ll still be available in any paid check service and more obscure free ones that aren’t top google hits.

You can find out a lot about your neighbors on some of these sites, especially beenverifieds paid version. It’s interesting that there hasn’t been more of a privacy push on ones own data in the states since it can affect ones safety and lead to people being targeted for various scams.

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