Lifestyle

Deleting Yourself From the Internet

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The internet is arguably one of the most important inventions in human history, giving us the ability to access information in an unprecedented way. Sadly, the internet is also a place where your personal information is at a high risk of being accessed by practically anyone. This, paired with large social networks like Facebook exposed as being reckless with your private date make the internet a dangerous place for those who wish to remain private. Deleting yourself from the internet is a tough thing to do, though there are some ways to do it.

Delete all web accounts

It can be hard to track just how many social media accounts you have. From the big ones like Facebook and Twitter, to ones you may have signed up for only to never use, these are the biggest culprits in tracking and using your private information. Shopping accounts are also a good idea to get rid of if you’re not using them. To delete these accounts, try going to your account settings and look for an option to deactivate.

Remove yourself from data collection sites

Some companies out there exist to collect your information. Known as data brokers, these companies collect data from anything you do online, then sell that data to interested parties in order to create more targeted advertising. To remove yourself from these sites, you can go to each one by one and undergo the process, though this may turn out to be quite the time sink. You can also use services like DeleteMe, which will remove you from these services, and even check back intermittently to make sure you haven’t been re-added.

Remove personal information from websites

If you have an old blog post or something you find undesirable still on the internet, you can always contact the webmaster of said website and explain why you want it to be taken down. Be advised that they are under no obligation to remove said content. However, a someone has posted sensitive information of yours like a bank account number of a Social Security number, then you can send a legal request to Google to have it removed.

Remove outdated search results

If there is an outdated website that pops up when your name is searched, you can submit the URL to Google to have its servers update so the old webpage result is no longer associated when you’re searched. Outdated pages could include an old employers staff page or organization directory that you’re no longer associated with.

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