Reclaim Your Online Privacy in 30 Minutes
Reclaim Your Online Privacy in 30 Minutes
How to Remove Your Personal Information from Mylife, Intelius, Spokeo, Radius, and BeenVerified
What in the actual....
A quick look at these sites and I was concerned. For me, for my family, for everyone really. The amount of information being collected on each of us and up for grabs for anyone willing to pay is astonishing!
I promise if you search for yourself on any one of these sites you will be horrified by the results. Not only did I find much of the information to be inaccurate, but it’s extremely intrusive.
Mylife, one such site, is peddling the information they gather and pitching it as “more important than your credit score.”
Some of these sites share your estimated net worth, cell phone number, physical address, and criminal records you may or may not have. Mylife assigns you a “reputation score” (pictured above) for anyone lazy enough to make a quick judgement call about who you are as a person. Maybe it’s a potential date, future employer, landlord, or even a lender.
For some this isn’t just a matter of privacy, but could be a matter of life and death. 81% of woman have been stalked by a current or former male partner who was also physically abusive, and there are approximately 1,500 murders by those abusers every year.
Online reputation is more important than ever before. I suggest you take some time (it took me a total of 30 minutes) and follow the instructions below to tell these companies you are not ok with them selling your information.
We’ll go step by step through how to remove your information from each of these sites.
Mylife.com, formerly known as classmates.com, has made headlines and paid out in lawsuits over their predatory tactics, false advertising, and hidden fees. In fact, mylife.com is itself is being sued as a scam. They will try to sell you services to manage your reputation with them, but I have a better solution. Tell them to remove your information from their site all together!
They assign you a “reputation score” and make information like your phone number, physical address, net worth, and criminal history available to anyone willing to pay. If that isn’t bad enough, they also make it easy to leave anonymous Yelp-like reviews about anyone on their site .
Are you scared yet?
Tell them to remove your info. You can either email or call (I chose email).
Option 1 – Email
Send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org and use the template below.
Title: Remove my listing – Opt out request for YOUR NAME
Mylife Customer Service,
My name is YOUR NAME, DOB M/D/Y. Please remove all my personal identifying information from your site and any affiliated sites. This is due to escalated privacy concerns.
Here is a link to my profile: (include the link you just searched on)
My current address is YOUR ADDRESS. My former address was ADDRESS FROM YOUR PROFILE.
Option 2 – Call
Customer service can be reached at 1(888) 704-1900.
Either option you choose be prepared to receive a sales pitch by phone or email to manage your data instead of remove it. Stay strong and don’t get side-tracked.
Intellius runs a service that consolidates your personally identifiable information and makes it publicly available. Anyone can run searches on you and find your private information. Unlike Mylife, these guys make it fairly straightforward to remove your information from their site.
Click on this Opt-out link, and follow the instructions on the site. You will need to provide a valid email address as this is where they will send the notification that your request has been received. Your profile should be removed in 72 hours.
Spokeo finds your personal info, and it searched you out across more than 120 social media platforms. All this information is available for the low price of $0.95 . Yikes!
In order to remove your profile from Spokeo you need to run a search on your name to find your profile. Be aware that you may have more than one. So you will need to copy each of them and fill out opt-out requests separately.
Once you have the profiles, the instructions on this Opt-out page are pretty straightforward.
I initially included a link for my profile and received an error saying it didn’t exist, despite me copying it form their site moments prior. This was due to the multiple profiles they had for me.
I contacted their customer service at email@example.com, and they were helpful in assisting me to remove my information. No sales tactics or issues to speak of.
The process takes 48-72 hours.
Unlike the other sites, I wasn’t able to find a way to remove my information from Radaris. However, you can create a free account and make your information private, which I did.
You need to visit the site and find your listing. Then from a drop-down menu select:
You will be taken to another screen where you can create an account. You will need to provide a cell phone number for verification and will then be able to:
“View My Account”
Once your set your account to private, anyone looking for your information will receive the following message:
“This profile is controlled by Your Name. To request additional information please contact Your Name.”
This update happens immediately.
In order to remove your information you need to send them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and include the following information:
- Your name as shown on the site
- Your age
- Current address
- Previous address
- Listed relatives
This is supposed to help them find your record to remove. They do note that they don’t guarantee your record or similar records won’t appear in the future, so you may need to check back.
This is by no means a complete list, we just named some of the more popular sites and want to raise awareness about controlling your information. These companies all make money selling our personal information to anyone willing to pay. That feels wrong.
Hopefully this helps you take some control back and makes you aware of what’s out there.
Disclaimer: The above is solely intended for informational purposes and in no way constitutes legal advice or specific recommendations.