People search sites advertise as services for finding people you’ve lost touch with.
These sites scrape personal information from local, state and federal public records, court records, social media, data brokers and forums. Tap or click here for detailed instructions for removing your information from these creepy sites.
For this entry in our weekly Opt-Out Tuesday series, we’ll show you how to remove yourself from TruthFinder.
Avoid people search sites at all costs, especially if it costs you
Don’t ever pay for any people search service. Most of these sites are scammy in nature. You may think you’re paying for one report and find that you’ve been roped into recurring charges.
Don’t pay to remove your information from any site. This process must be provided for free, as you can see in the steps below.
Do you have older relatives who may not know about these sites? While you’re opting out yourself, why not do the same for them? Just type in their information as you would your own, and follow our steps to completion.
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The truth about TruthFinder
TruthFinder has been around since 2015. The site advertises itself as a simple way to find public records online, including criminal or traffic records, contact information, employment and education history and social media accounts.
The site says that it helps “Americans reconnect with family and friends” by scanning hundreds of millions of records. But it doesn’t discriminate — crooks, hackers and scammers can access this information.
Deleting your data from TruthFinder
TruthFinder is part of PeopleConnect, which has several people search sites under its umbrella, such as US Search, InstantCheckmate and Intelius. All these sites and more now use the same opt-out processes.
The original opt-out link for Truthfinder now directs you to PeopleConnect’s suppression tool:
- Go to suppression.peopleconnect.us/login.
- Check your inbox for a confirmation email from email@example.com. Tap the Verify Email button in the message.
- Enter your name and email address and scroll down and hit Save when you’re done.
- Go back to the top of the page and select the Suppression Setting tab and wait for your information to show up.
- If the information matches yours, select the Visibility Setting dropdown menu and select Suppressed.
- If you can’t locate your information, select the Identity tab at the top to go back to the previous page.
- Hit the Edit Identity button and enter more information, such as another email address you use. Verifying more of your information may help to locate your matching profile on the site.
NOTE: PeopleConnect pushes the suppression tool as the best way to stop people from finding you on its sites, but there is also an option to delete. Before you do so, know that PeopleConnect states that deleting your data will also delete your suppressions.
With that in mind, here’s how delete your data:
- Go to suppression.peopleconnect.us/privacy-center and scroll down to the Right to Delete section.
- Enter your email address (if you followed the suppression steps above, your information may already be in the system and you won’t have to enter your email address again).
- Hit the Delete My User Data button. You’ll get a message saying you have to complete the process via a link in your email.
- Check your inbox for a message from firstname.lastname@example.org. Tap the link at the bottom to permanently delete your account data.
- You’ll be taken to a confirmation page. Keep an eye out for another email message confirming your deletion.
NOTE: If you’ve already gone through the PeopleConnect deletion process for Intelius or another site, you’ll get an email stating that there is no record associated with your email.
If you have any trouble completing these steps or need more information, write to email@example.com or call 888-245-1655.
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