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Remove your personal info from the top 7 people search sites

I always say that what you post on the internet is forever.

That’s why it’s crucial to protect your personal information. Think, for example, how bad it would be if a risqué photo you thought was safe on your computer ended up in the wrong hands. Tap or click for my best advice on storing sensitive personal pictures.

Of course, many records you’ll find online aren’t quite so private. Tap or click for a trick to see what your home, or any other place, looked like years ago. It’s a fun walk down memory lane.

Speaking of your home, your address is connected to your name all over the web — along with your age, cell phone or landline number, family members’ names, every address where you lived, and lots more. You should delete it, and I’ll show you how.

People search sites 101

People search sites make money by collecting and selling personal information. This repository can include your name, address, date of birth, gender, marital status, family members, social media profiles, education levels, property records, financial records, phone numbers, police records, employment information, and more.

The sites scrape this information from local, state, and federal public records, along with court records, social media, online forums, and other sources. Some also purchase information from data brokers.

Data brokers are loosely regulated at best, and there’s no law to prevent them from collecting and selling publicly available information.

Anyone can search for information about you: A jealous ex to find out where you live or a scammer gathering information to fuel their nefarious deeds. The more people know about you, the more damage they can do.

Make every Tuesday “Opt-Out Tuesday”

I started “Opt-Out” Tuesday on Komando.com after getting requests from readers asking how to remove their personal data from people search sites. The problem is that the removal steps are not always straightforward to find on these sites.

Every Tuesday, I pick a people search site and tell you precisely how to remove your personal info. So that you never miss one of these sites, take action now.

Tap or click here now to try out my free Tech Tips newsletter to get each Opt-Out Tuesday article straight to your inbox.

Here are a few more tips before we get started. Don’t pay to remove your information from any people search site. The site must provide this process for free.

While removing your info from these sites, you must be careful which links you click. Buttons that look like part of the site may be ads that lead you to another site that requests payment.

The Top 7 Sites to Remove Your Data

It can quickly get overwhelming trying to do all seven in one sitting. Do one a day for the next week. And then drop by my website for every “Opt-Out Tuesday.”

1. Remove yourself from BeenVerified

BeenVerified lets users search for property records as well as personal information. Here’s how to remove your data:

  • Go to https://www.beenverified.com/app/optout/search.
  • Enter your first and last name and select your state from the drop-down menu. Then hit the Search button.
  • Select the correct match from the search results and click Proceed to Opt-Out.
  • Fill in your email address and click Send Verification Email.
  • Open the email and click the link inside. This will bring you to a confirmation page.

Expect it to take several days to weeks before your information vanishes.

Now you can go on to remove your property data:

  • Go to https://www.beenverified.com/app/optout/address-search.
  • Enter your address in the search box.
  • Click Continue next to your matching result.
  • Tick the box on the names you want to remove from the record, then click Opt-out Owner.
  • Fill in your email address and click Send Verification Email.
  • Open the email and click the link inside. This will bring you to a confirmation page.

If the steps aren’t working, contact support@beenverified.com.

For more in-depth instructions on BeenVerified, including screenshots for every step, tap or click here. 

2. Remove yourself from Spokeo

Spokeo boasts a database of 12 billion records. Nearly 20 million people visit Spokeo.com each month.

Follow these instructions to opt-out of Spokeo:

  • Go to spokeo.com and enter your information to search for your profile.
  • Refine your search by selecting a state from the Browse Locations list. Tap All Filters to refine your search further.
  • Tap on your name to go to your profile page and copy the URL.
  • Go to spokeo.com/optout.
  • Paste the URL in the Enter URL here field.
  • Enter your email address and complete the Captcha.
  • Select Remove this listing.
  • Check your email for a message from Spokeo. Tap or click the link below this line: “To complete the removal process, please click this URL or paste it into your browser.”
  • You’ll be taken to a page with the message, “We’ve received your request to remove this listing.”

Give the site at least a week to process your removal request.

If you need customer support, call Spokeo at 888-558-9004. Check out the contact page for more ways to get in touch.

For more in-depth instructions on Spokeo, including screenshots, tap or click here.

3. Remove yourself from MyLife

MyLife launched in 2008 after a merger between two other search sites: Reunion.com and Wink.com. The site boasts a Reputation Score feature, which assigns a number based on how you’re presented online to anyone who cares to look.

Here’s how to remove yourself entirely from the site.

  • Go to mylife.com and select the Do Not Sell My Personal Information button at the bottom of the page.
  • Fill in the required starred information.
  • Select Find URL of Reputation Profile by last name and then select the first letter of your last name.
  • You’ll have to go through quite a bit of narrowing down to get to a list of profiles that match yours.
  • Once you find your profile, copy the URL and paste it into the field marked Enter the profile URL on the opt-out page.
  • When you’re finished, select Opt Out at the bottom of the form.

A message appears that states your request will be processed within 15 business days.

If you need customer support, call 888-704-1900 or email membersupport@mylife.com.

For more in-depth instructions on MyLife, including screenshots, tap or click here.

4. Remove yourself from Intelius

Intelius is one of the more prominent data brokers on the web and owns several people search sites such as PeopleFinder, ZabaSearch, and US Search.

Here’s how to opt-out of Intelius:

  • Go to intelius.com/opt-out/submit.
  • Enter your first and last name, state of residence and email and select Continue.
  • Find your name on the next page and select Remove This Record.
  • You’ll be sent to a page informing you that an email confirmation was sent.
  • Open the message in your inbox and scan the information before hitting the Confirm Email button.
  • You’ll be taken to a final confirmation page.

Your information will be removed from the Intelius database within seven days.

If you need help, contact customer support at 888-245-1655 or send a message to support@mailer.intelius.com.

For more in-depth instructions on Intelius, including screenshots, tap or click here.

5. Remove yourself from StateRecords

StateRecords promises instant access to state, county, and municipal records. Removing your information from StateRecords is an easy process:

  • Go to staterecords.org/optout.
  • Enter your name, state, and city.
  • Mark the checkbox for all entries that match your information, then select Remove Data.
  • Enter your email address on the next screen and complete the Captcha.
  • Select Submit when you’re done.
  • Check your email for a message from support@staterecords.org.
  • Select Click Here to confirm your removal request.
  • You’ll be taken to a confirmation page.

Wait a few days, search the site for your records, and repeat the process if necessary.

If you have any issues, contact StateRecords at 855-938-5042.

For more in-depth instructions on StateRecords, including screenshots, tap or click here.

6. Remove yourself from Instant Checkmate

Instant Checkmate boasts more than 1.4 billion searches on its website. Checkmate, indeed.

Here’s how to erase your information from Instant Checkmate.

  • Go to instantcheckmate.com/opt-out.
  • Fill in your name, city and state and hit Search.
  • Select the correct match from the search results and choose Remove This Record. Repeat this process for each match.
  • Enter your email address, complete the Captcha, and select Send Confirmation Email.
  • Open the confirmation email. Check your spam/junk folders if you don’t see it. Then select Confirm Opt-Out.
  • You’ll be taken to a confirmation screen, and you’re done.

Your data should be removed in 48 hours.

If you need help, contact customer support at 800-222-8985.

For more in-depth instructions on Instant Checkmate, including screenshots, tap or click here.

7. Remove yourself from PeekYou

PeekYou advertises its services as a convenient way to find your friends and relatives. There are a couple of ways to remove your information from PeekYou:

  • Go to peekyou.com and enter your first and last name and state. Click the search button.
  • You’ll get a list of matches near the top of the page. Click on the match that applies to you.
  • On the next page, click Opt Out in the upper-right corner of the box containing your information. It’s gray and hard to see, but it’s there.
  • You’ll be taken to an opt-out form with the Unique ID for the profile you selected already filled in.
  • Enter your email address and complete the Captcha.
  • Read and confirm the agreements and click submit.
  • You’ll get an email with a confirmation link. Click the link, and you’ll be taken to a confirmation page.

Alternatively, you can go to PeekYou’s homepage, scroll down to the bottom of the page, and select Do Not Sell My Personal Information. From here, you can enter your info and URLs linking to any matching profiles on the site. Use the above steps to complete your opt-out request.

If you need to contact PeekYou, send an email to info@peekyou.com.

For more in-depth instructions on PeekYou, including screenshots, tap or click here.

Reminder: If you have not already taken the step to get my free Tech Tips Newsletter to make every Tuesday “Opt-Out Tuesday,” tap or click here to sign up now while you’re thinking about it.

Keep your tech-know going

My popular podcast is called “Kim Komando Today.” It’s a solid 30 minutes of tech news, tips, and callers with tech questions like you from all over the country. Search for it wherever you get your podcasts. For your convenience, hit the link below for a recent episode.

Listen Now: Password manager hacked, smartwatch burns, Brand New or Not True

In this fun and informative episode, Samsung’s smartwatch is under fire for reportedly burning wearers, a popular password manager was hacked, and why you shouldn’t rely on Tile’s new QR code stickers to find your lost stuff. Plus, how to ask Google to remove your personal info from search results, turn an old PC into a media server, and see if Kim can fool a Komando listener in this week’s Brand New or Not True.

Check out my podcast “Kim Komando Today” on Apple, Google Podcasts, Spotify, or your favorite podcast player.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television, or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

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