Data search sites like Whitepages.com make it easy to find your personal information, putting your full name, address, phone number, email address and other personal details up for grabs and available to anyone for a small, one-time fee.
Not only does this give spammers and scammers instant access to sensitive personal data, it also provides anyone from identity thieves and disgruntled exes to long-forgotten enemies the opening they need to invade your personal privacy—and use your information against you and your family.
Removing your name and info from Whitepages is a good first step to protect your identity and peace of mind.
Why does Whitepages have my info?
Whitepages collects and stores your personal info not only because they have the ability to find it, but due to the ongoing and incredibly high demand for personal data online. Millions of people search for personal details every day, making the collection and sale of your information highly profitable for Whitepages and other people search sites throughout the web.
In other words, there’s a lot of incentive for White Pages and others to collect your personal data and charge money to see it.
How does Whitepages get your info?
Whitepages uses powerful data-collection technology to comb the web for your personal info, crawling consumer info lists, third party sites, social platforms and more to collect your data and populate its database. Whitepages uses this readily available info pulled from multiple sources across the internet to create your Whitepages listing, which is then made searchable to users for free.
Whitepages also provides options to buy more detailed info for a one-time or monthly subscription fee (which we’ll cover later in this post).
Whitepages features a number of details on your personal listing, including your:
- Full name (including maiden names and aliases)
- Home addresses (past and present)
- Phone numbers
- Email addresses
- Spouse info (including divorce records)
- Known relatives
- Court and criminal records
- Auto accident info
- Business details
- And more
While Whitepages certainly isn’t the only place to find your personal info, it is one of the more popular people search sites on the web, receiving tens of millions of unique visitors every month. Removing your records from White Pages helps eliminate a high-profile risk to your privacy almost immediately.
Note: your White Pages listing will likely highlight info located on other data-aggregates, such as Ancestry.com. This can sometimes make information removal a little more complicated.
How to remove your information from White Pages
Deleting your personal information from Whitepages is only possible by submitting an opt-out request. While opting out of White Pages is a fairly simple process, it’s important to follow each step carefully to avoid unnecessary issues and ensure the right name and listing are removed as quickly as possible.
Here are the steps to remove yourself from White Pages:
- Search your name on Whitepages
- Locate your listing
- Copy the URL
- Find the Whitepages.com opt-out form
- Verify your info
- Provide a reason for removal
- Enter your phone #
- Provide your verification code
1. Search your name
Go to Whitepages.com and search your name. Accuracy is key to locating and removing the correct Whitepages listing.
2. Locate your information
Find the listing that best matches your personal information. Once you’ve located the right listing, click “View Details.”
Take extra care to choose the listing that’s yours. While it’s not uncommon for people to pick the wrong listing for removal, doing so can add days or even weeks to the process, giving online criminals even more time to find your data and use it to hurt you.
3. Copy the URL
Once you’re confident you’ve chosen the right Whitepages profile, highlight and copy the URL.
5. Paste your profile link
Paste the profile link you copied in Step 3 into the space provided. Once complete, click “Opt-out.”
6. Verify your info
Whitepages will ask you to confirm your info. If your name and address match up, click on “Remove me” to go to the next step.
Again, being absolutely sure your info is correct is essential to getting your listing removed from White Pages. Failure to do so will typically result in having to repeat the process.
7. Provide a reason for removal
Whitepages asks everyone to select one of four reasons for removing their information:
- My profile information is incorrect
- I am receiving spam calls and junk mailings
- I am being harassed or stalked by someone
- I just want to keep my information private
Choose the reason that best fits your motive and click “Submit.”
8. Enter your phone number
Next, Whitepages will request a personal phone number to confirm your identity. After entering your number, check the small box beneath and click “Call now to verify.” You will then receive a robocall to complete verification.
Note: it’s crucial to provide an accurate number AND be ready to answer the pending phone call. Calls come in fast after clicking the prompt—and if you give the wrong number or miss the call for any reason, you will need to start the process over.
9. Provide your verification code
After you answer the call, the Whitepages robot will ask you to enter the four-digit verification code provided just after Step 8. Once your code is confirmed, the robot will provide an estimate (usually 24 hours) on how long it will take to complete your opt-out.
Congratulations! Now that you have supplied your verification code, your personal info will no longer appear on any free searches across the site.
But while your data will no longer be visible to everyday users, your name, address and phone number will still be searchable by Whitepages Premium subscribers—people who pay a monthly fee to access your data at their leisure.
1. Visit the Whitepages Premium homepage and search your name
2. Find the record you want to remove. Right-click on “View Details” and select “Copy link address.”
4. Fill out the remaining fields on the request form. These will include your:
- Email address
- Full name
- Phone number
You will also be asked for a “Subject” and “Description” outlining the details of your request—as well as any attachments related to the removal. Once everything is entered, click “Submit.”
5. Check your email.
Whitepages Support will send a form email confirming receipt of your request, including a request # to reference if you’d like to follow up down the road.
Removing your profile from Premium usually takes around three days or so, unless there’s an issue with the info you provided. Be sure to keep your request # handy should your listing bubble back up in the future.
I’ve deleted my personal information from White Pages. What now?
Getting your info removed from White Pages is a great first step in shoring up your privacy.
But just because your Whitepages listing has been erased doesn’t mean your personal data is in the clear—not by a long shot.
Whitepages is just one of hundreds if not thousands of data aggregators throughout the web, companies who specialize in exploiting your background and personal info for a profit.
And because public records are, well, public, and social is social, there’ll be no shortage of people-search platforms gathering your data for the foresseable future, ensuring Whitepages-like sites will continue to pop up in search and expose your info without decisive action.
How do I remove myself from people searching?
Most people-search platforms offer their own unique process for opting out and removing your personal info. Finding and following each site’s instructions is key to deleting your personal listing from search and eliminating a potentially devastating threat to your privacy, safety and online reputation.
Unfortunately, navigating to each data-aggregate’s opt-out procedure and performing each step to the letter can be a tedious, time-consuming process. Even finding the page to begin removal on a site like Whitepages can be a chore, simply because it’s not in the platform’s interest to make information removal easy.
Add the fact that getting your personal records removed isn’t always guaranteed, and you’ve got a frustrating, energy-draining endeavor that forces many to throw up their hands and give up altogether.
Online monitoring and reputation management are the answer
With hundreds of people-search sites and different removal procedures out there, deleting your personal information from the web can be a confusing, even monumental challenge.
And because personal listings are everywhere and so easy to find in search, the only surefire way to protect yourself and your family is by monitoring and managing your online reputation.
The right tools and ORM strategy can help you not only overcome the challenges of personal data removal, but also give you control over what friends, coworkers, bosses and foes find when they search your name on the web, ensuring private info stays private and your identity remains in your hands.
Vigilant, ongoing monitoring of your name, personal info and how you appearin Google search allows you to stay a step ahead of personal listings online. With a watchful eye on your digital presence, you can take action before threats turn into four-alarm nightmares and create irreparable damage.
Minimizing the impact and visibility of sensitive personal info is key to protecting yourself and your family. And with the web being so unpredictable, a robust online reputation management (ORM) strategy can provide an effective tool for keeping that info under wraps and out of the wrong people’s hands.
Customized ORM campaigns utilize the latest in SEO techniques and digital technology to give you control over your online presence, providing you ownership of your online footprint while preventing harmful personal data from seeping into search. With the right approach to managing your online reputation, you can defend your online privacy from sites like Whitepages.com and steer your own digital narrative, building the image you want to convey to the world.
To learn more, visit us online or call an Internet Reputation ORM specialist today at 800-758-9012.