Modern technology is astounding. To think about the advancements made over just the past 15-20 years is awe-inspiring. TVs are ultra-high definition. Cars are beginning to run on electricity, and in some cases, they can even drive themselves. Voice control and artificial intelligence make our homes feel like they’ve been pulled straight out of an old Sci-Fi movie.
Most prominent of all the technological advancements is the ability to have virtually any information we could ever dream of right at our fingertips in the form of a smartphone. This access to information can be highly convenient, but it also comes with downsides.
As the flow of digital information accelerates, so too does the availability of our personal information. Let’s take a look at how your information can be accessed and what you can do to protect yourself.
Public Records Searches
If you’ve ever done a google search for yourself, chances are you have come across public records and people-finder websites. These websites scour the farthest reaches of the web to find sensitive information about you, and this information is then made available to anyone who cares to pay a few dollars.
Information on these websites can range from details on bankruptcies, public court records, employment information, addresses, phone numbers, and much more. It is often unsettling to know that so much private information is so readily available. Aside from the niggling feeling of being watched, there is another real danger of having this information out there.
The actual threat of public records and people-finder websites is the chance of your personal information falling into the hands of an identity thief. A skilled online bandit, armed with nothing more than your name and the state you live in, can unlock a treasure trove of personal information. After they have the necessary information, you’re officially at risk of having your identity stolen.
How does this information leak into the vast sea of online data?
Well, much of it we provide ourselves. Anything on your social media profile is fair game, including any contact information you make available. Some of the information leaked comes from unscrupulous companies that sell your information. Other companies or organizations may fall victim to a data breach where hackers gain access to and subsequently release customer information.
How to Remove Your Information from Public Records
The good news is that you can take steps to remove this information from public records and people-finder websites.
Many of these search websites do have the option to opt-out and disallow the use of your information. You could, of course, go through the tedious process of locating the opt-out information on each site. This method, of course, would be very time-consuming, and some websites do not provide any way to opt-out.
The more straightforward and thorough approach is to hire a service to take care of the problem for you. These professional services know precisely how to remove your information from public records. When you hire an identity theft protection service, they will crawl the web to locate where your personal information is available and promptly begin the process of having it removed.
Technology is a powerful beast, and it is used for both good and evil. Along with the convenient access to local weather and scores of your favorite sports teams, there is also the risk of your own information falling into the wrong hands. In some instances, there is little you can do to prevent certain information from leaking, but you do have options to get help in removing your private details from the web.