You may believe that your online activities are absolutely private, but every time you visit a website, register for an account, make a purchase, send a message, or view search engine results, you are disclosing information about yourself. If you’re concerned about this, you might want to read more about how to erase your digital tracks.
4 Ways to Remove Yourself from the Internet
While many people have known for years that firms, particularly social media platforms, collect and sell user data, the Cambridge Analytica-Facebook scandal brought it to the public’s notice.
This “scandal” is just one illustration of the privacy risks associated with internet use. Over the last five years, almost every major social network has been hacked in some way, and we haven’t even touched the surface.
It’s critical that you start taking charge of your internet presence as someone with dozens of accounts. Personal information should be erased and internet footprints should be hidden.
The first step is to conduct a Google search on yourself. Start by looking up your name. If you have a generic name, you may need to search for it together with additional criteria (such as the city you live in).
Not only will these searches show you how much information is available, but they will also help you get a sense of where you are. To put it another way, it tells you how much work you have ahead of you.
Delete Your Social Media Accounts
The most critical step is to remove your social media accounts. Many people’s profiles on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube feature a lot of information about them. Rather than deactivate, the key is to erase.
Security Baron explains, “Facebook notably includes options for both deactivation and deletion.” “Deactivating your account ensures that it is ready for a rapid return to the site. As long as you don’t login for the two-week rapid reactivation period, deletion initiates the process of erasing your stored data and prohibits Facebook from accessing your information.”
Similar methods apply to sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, so familiarise yourself with them.
You will have to contact the webmasters responsible for the website if you find information published online – such as in a news article or blog. In most cases, the content has to be deleted physically. You don’t have much control.
Data Collection Sites Remove Yourself
Many companies collect and sell your information to advertisers and other interested parties on the Internet. Spokeo, PeopleFinder and Whitepages.com are some of the main ones.
It is quite a lourd process, although it is possible to access each and every one of these sites one by one and to delete your information. Each site has a unique policy of its own. Some need physical documents to be sent by fax, while other require you to be on the phone.
“A service like DeleteMe at Abine.com is, however, easier to do than to use,” writes CNET Eric Franklin. “The service will jump through all for about $130 for one year’s membership
Put all in one place
The trouble with the Facebook fiasco, new information infringements and the rise in cyber attacks in Cambridge Analytica is that when you release control, you, as a single person, have very little control over your information, your internet and your information. There’s also reason to believe that we only have the tip of the iceberg right now. And after that, it’s a good time to really work out and focus on how you can protect yourself.
You really cannot delete your entire history or internet presence, but you can certainly make some great steps to limit the amount of information that other individuals can find and