How can I get my phone number removed from public record databases?
It's easy to feel like you have no control over your information when so many companies or people seemingly have it at their fingertips. With the digitization of records and technology, information can be transferred and stored with ease. This is a major concern for the future of privacy and civil liberties.
That said, it's a huge trend and it doesn't make sense to fight directly against any strong current. It does make sense to keep a good strategy; stay updated on information and technology to help make the best decisions. That's to say knowing the tide times and having a floatation device can really be very useful.
There are tons of companies out there with your information. Gathering information on people is a multi-billion dollar industry. Entire companies make their living by continually collecting information on people.
Let's just name a few of these data companies so you get an idea: Acxiom, Intelius, Ameridex, People Data, People Finders, SwitchBoard, Aristotle, U.S. Search, U.S.A. People Search, Zaba Tools, and PrivateEye.
You can control to a great extent who uses or doesn't use your information.
It's important to note that certain information typically called directory information—including your name, address, and phone number—will always be made available. With directory information you can keep it unlisted or listed in a public directory. Other forms of personally identifiable information may also be sold from company to company. The good news is that the customer (you!) must consent to these transactions. To learn more, click here.
Our strategy: Minimize your circulating information.
So do you want to remove your phone number and other information from record databases? It would take you hours to research all the companies that have your information and even more time to follow through with their "opt-out" policies. Lucky for you, we've already done it...
Know your rights
- You have the right to "opt-out" of a company selling your information under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and Gramm, Leach, Bliley Act.
Please keep in mind that because of certain government rules, laws, and the sensitivity of some of your information, no third party including our company, can fully opt-you-out of all these companies' databases. The individual must opt themselves out.
We are aware of that some of the information on this site doesn't always pertain to you specifically removing your phone number. These methods help at getting to the root of the problem (and phone numbers just happen to be a big part of that root).
To view a list of the data brokers and public record aggregators, along with complete instructions for opting out, click here.
November 29, 2007 at 9:38 PM
OK, so this may sound really paranoid... but: How can I tell that any of the "opt out" forms aren't really just phishing scams, where they will be stealing my private information under the guise of offering to help me protect that very same private information.
Response to J Adams
December 3, 2007 at 5:24 PM
I like the way you think J! That's a great level of healthy scrutiny when you're giving out your personal data in the future. You really have to think whenever you're giving out personal information, even if it's to get yourself off these lists.
Each company database listed has a website if you Google it, and you can usually see what they sell. Since phishing is illegal, it would be pretty dumb to have a corporate presence advertising it. If you're really not certain, you can always find the "contact us" on the page and call to talk to a real person.
Bottom line: use your discretion.
Thanks for the great comments,
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