People search sites exist for one reason: To help people find out more about you. Though they advertise their services as made for friends and family to locate loved ones, the truth is that anyone can use these invasive sites.
You can opt out of people search sites, but the problem is that there are so many out there. We’ve compiled a growing list of sites and detailed instructions for taking down your personal information. Tap or click here to remove yourself from creepy people search sites.
For this week’s entry in our Opt-Out Tuesday series, we’ll show you how to remove yourself from Whitepages.
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.
And never pay to remove your information from any site. This process must be provided for free.
When opting out of a people search site, be careful which links you click. They’re often ads that lead you to another site that requests payment. We’ll provide accurate links to remove yourself from these sites with each Opt-out Tuesday report.
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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Remember phone books?
Before the internet, we used phone books to find more information about a company or person. Yellow pages consisted of paid listings with local businesses’ names, numbers and addresses. White pages were geared toward personal phone numbers and street addresses in a specific region. Sometimes the books were combined into one.
Whitepages.com has been around since 1997. The people search site boasts cell phone numbers for over 275 million people nationwide. You can use Whitepages to look up people by name, address or phone number. There’s also a tool for background checks and one for landlords to screen tenants.
There’s too much easy access to information on this site. Let’s get yours out of there.
RELATED: Family safety tip: How to track your kid’s phone
Remove yourself from Whitepages
To remove listings from Whitepages, you must fill out an opt-out form and verify your request over the phone. It’s not ideal, but it’s the only way.
Follow our step-by-step instructions to opt-out of Whitepages:
- Go to whitepages.com and type in your name and location and hit Search.
- You can filter by age and state to narrow the results.
- Scroll down past the results with the View Full Report Button and find your profile in the results below and select View Details.
- Copy the URL of your profile page.
- Go to whitepages.com/suppression-requests.
- Paste your URL and select Next.
- Select Remove Me on the next page.
- Open the Select a reason dropdown menu and choose I just want to keep my information private, then hit Next.
- Enter your phone number and check off the box. Tap or click the Call now to verify button.
- You’ll receive an automated call asking for the verification code that pops up on the next screen. When prompted, enter the verification code. The call will tell you that your opt-out request was accepted, and it may take up to 24 hours for your profile to be removed from Whitepages.
If you need help, email customer service at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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