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Spooky personal info ...
Old 06-18-2013, 09:19 PM   #1
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Spooky personal info ...

I met someone who told me of some books he was writing on some historical subject. I was doing a plein air (outdoor) oil painting at the time and could not give this my full attention. Later I thought I'd look him up but he was not listed on Amazon. Went to Google and one of the links was to spokeo.com. This site seemed to give a little info but then wanted $'s for more. I just wanted to find out if this guy had written anything I'd be interested in but instead wound up looking at an invasive personnel info site -- felt like pornography to me.

So on spokeo.com I put in my name. There were about 25 people with my name listed but if I clicked the correct city, bingo ... it was me. Out popped my rough age and a picture of my house (probably from Google) along with some info available for $'s like my phone number, email, address, etc. And I do not even participate on Facebook or other pretty invasive sites and yet here was stuff I would not want others to get into.

Then I looked up "spokeo" and found a few unflattering discussions about their intrusiveness. There is a way to wipe your info from the site but it involves some "opt-out" work and is not guaranteed to be lasting. You can actually go to "DeleteMe" and for $129/year pay them to wipe you off of 17 other sites.

Strange world out there. Trust no one, I guess.

P.S. My mention of this has nothing in my mind to do with the politics surrounding the recent Snowden affair. I'm just concerned about what private individuals can get up to on the regular old web.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:31 PM   #2
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Try your name on pipl.com

You'll be astounded.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:42 PM   #3
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Try your name on pipl.com

You'll be astounded.
Yep, it found me but there were a lot of hits for my more commonly used name. If you knew my name and city you'd get me. And a report on a modest data set can be had for the princely sum of $2.97 (includes one other report for that price). Yikes.
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Old 06-18-2013, 09:59 PM   #4
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Yea, my sister told me about Spokeo. I couldn't believe what I saw.

Every place that I have lived in. My job. My current address. My age. My family. Everyone I have associated with...it's on Spokeo.

I tried some celebrity and their informations are there too.
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:05 PM   #5
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Has anyone purchased any of the 'for pay' data on spokeo, pipl, etc? I'm curious to know what that looks like and how much detail is there. IOW, is it worth it?

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Old 06-18-2013, 10:12 PM   #6
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Sounds like everything you need to steal someone's identity is available in one convenient place now. Hard to believe this is legal.
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:26 PM   #7
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Glad you posted this. I was warned about Spokeo years ago and removed the listing, via their instructions. Within 48 hours, it was gone and I patted myself on the back and dusted off my hands. So, after reading your post, I checked again. DH's info pops up. I am listed as living in a town I resided in 30 years ago. My name has very unique spelling, so am pretty certain there is not another human up there with same name.

The pipl website was new to me and way too creepy.

Is it an exercise in futility to try to keep this info off the www?
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:30 PM   #8
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Eh...typed my name in on both sites. Most of the info is wrong.

If someone wants to spend a few bucks and get the 'poop' on me, I say whatever kicks their chicken. More than likely that info will be wrong too.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:37 AM   #9
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It's actually amazing that patients can rate their providers online. Anyone can log in to "rate my doctor" websites and leave the most awful comments. Even if they have never seen you. Same for "rate my professor" sites. Some of the comments on these sites clearly are defamation.

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Originally Posted by bbbamI View Post
Eh...typed my name in on both sites. Most of the info is wrong.

If someone wants to spend a few bucks and get the 'poop' on me, I say whatever kicks their chicken. More than likely that info will be wrong too.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:41 AM   #10
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It's actually amazing that patients can rate their providers online. Anyone can log in to "rate my doctor" websites and leave the most awful comments. Even if they have never seen you. Same for "rate my professor" sites. Some of the comments on these sites clearly are defamation.
Very true. And some of them look like Mom wrote them!
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Old 06-19-2013, 07:01 AM   #11
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Yeah, this "national conversation" we are supposed to have about the Feds collecting info should be a little broader. Click monitoring sites primarily generate info to better target ads but what is to prevent them from selling broader personal research offerings that could empower in identity theft.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:03 AM   #12
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This is nothing a few google searches and county record researching couldn't find. This information has always been available for people to look it up.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:10 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by ohyes View Post
Glad you posted this. I was warned about Spokeo years ago and removed the listing, via their instructions. Within 48 hours, it was gone and I patted myself on the back and dusted off my hands. So, after reading your post, I checked again. DH's info pops up. I am listed as living in a town I resided in 30 years ago. My name has very unique spelling, so am pretty certain there is not another human up there with same name.

The pipl website was new to me and way too creepy.

Is it an exercise in futility to try to keep this info off the www?

Actually using them to remove the info is probably the wrong thing to do. You just confirmed to them that the info is correct, now they sell it to another marketer. The same goes for the spam you get that has a link that says " Remove" me from your mailing list, that just confirms they a live email.

Most this can be found anyway with some googling.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:23 AM   #14
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This is nothing a few google searches and county record researching couldn't find. This information has always been available for people to look it up.
Just makes it too easy. The easier it gets, the more it will be used.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:25 AM   #15
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Actually using them to remove the info is probably the wrong thing to do. You just confirmed to them that the info is correct, now they sell it to another marketer. The same goes for the spam you get that has a link that says " Remove" me from your mailing list, that just confirms they a live email.
...
I too would be worried that trying to remove info could in itself be used by someone.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:27 AM   #16
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We have no privacy. Get over it.

I have an old high school friend who is a hermit. I still found him with the internet.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:37 AM   #17
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I am not on either, although once going through immigration I saw the computer screen and there were pages and pages of people with my name. Lots of bad ones according to the immigration guy. Fortunately, my middle name narrows it down quite a bit and I am OK to come into this country without being sent to secondary.
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