People Smart Opt Out: How to Protect Your Personal Info
Learn the People Smart opt out process and how to protect your online privacy today.
Millions of people use online people searches to look up distant relatives, long-lost high-school friends, and even new love interests. You may hear advice from people to Google a person before dating.
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And, doing a web search on someone you may have just met is a great way to discover any criminal record or information you have posted on your social media accounts.
Most companies will now conduct an internet search on prospective hires. As part of the hiring process, they will screen your social media accounts. The point is, there are good reasons why people are searching for information on others.
But, there are also reasons why you may want to downsize your digital footprint to reduce the chance of being a victim of foul play.
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Consider conducting a People Smart opt out to have your name and personal information removed from this people search website. If you don't, it may present a hazard to you and your family's personal safety.
What are online data brokers?
People search websites are a type of data broker. This business is based on a foundation of providing information and getting paid for it. You will find different types of online data brokers that also search the dark web to collect information that is not - and should not be public. This process is called data mining.
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What happens is that a computer algorithm is written to discover and analyze massive volumes of data with the hopes of finding some hidden value.
Companies use data mining to direct their advertising campaigns to people with certain interests or buying habits, so they can market directly to them. Companies also use data mining to get an advantage over the competition.
If a company sells high-end furniture, they will use data brokers to find potential customers with a high income or those living in certain communities.
What is People Smart?
People Smart is a data broker website. The company's only product is the selling of personal information that is gleaned from multiple online sources.
Initially, the information is not presented in an organized fashion. People search websites piece together your info from various public listings. These include property tax websites, sheriff's departments, employment records, and more.
Much of the information may also be taken from online websites that store personal profiles. But these sites have a minimum of privacy, or they have experienced a data breach.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) receives tens of thousands of complaints every year about people search companies posting info without permission.
People Smart uses a combination of artificial intelligence, facial identity, and database records matching to look up information on anyone. This includes the person's phone number, name, email address, and even social media profiles.
Once you enter some basic information about someone, PeopleSmart will return with the photo and information of possible matches.
Is People Smart legit?
PeopleSmart is a legitimate business. But, the website has a very low consumer rating. A frequent complaint is often about the free trial offer that can be misleading.
Other consumers complain that their credit card is being charged during a free trial period or their phone numbers are listed without consent.
When you use People Smart, the computer will typically return a number of possible matches. Another complaint has been that the site charges for info that may not be what the consumer is looking for.
Don't expect this website to return criminal records or mugshot photos. It will only return the following:
All searches on People Smart are confidential, so the person you're searching for will never know. Still, you never know when you will receive false information that can lead to bad decisions.
How to People Smart Opt Out
If you want to remove your information from PeopleSmart, you have to complete a number of steps.
Some companies make it difficult to remove information from their databases because data is their bread and butter. You submit your People Smart opt out manually by visiting PeopleSmart.com Opt Out.
The company has a second party that handles Do Not Sell My Info/Opt-Out requests. So, don't be confused when the BeenVerified logo appears instead of the PeopleSmart logo.
- Find your listing by typing your first and last name along with the city and state you live in. Then, press the button “Find My Listing”.
- Once you find your listing on PeopleSmart, click the button underneath the image that reads “That’s The One”.
- You must enter your email address to receive a verification letter and resolve the reCAPTCHA. This protects the website from bots.
- After you receive the email from PeopleSmart.com, you can continue with the opt-out process.
- After clicking the "Opt Out" button, it may take up to 72 hours for your information to be removed.
- Make sure you click the "OK" button to totally complete the People Smart opt out process.
You social media posts and personal information should not be used to make a profit. It can also put you in a situation where your information could be stolen for criminal purposes.
It is a good idea to opt out of this people search website and all the others that have cropped up in the past 10 years.
Reducing your online footprint
Most people-search websites locate information by the data left behind due to tracking.
Computers record everywhere you go online. Your browser will attempt to assist you by keeping track of sites you've visited. There are even cyber programs that can log every keystroke you make on your computer.
For these reasons, it is a good idea to minimize what you do online and the information you post on the internet.
It is also a good idea to disable location tracking on your connected devices. This setting allows for location-based suggestions.
In other words, it is tracking everywhere you go online and where you are geographically located in real-time 24/7.
When you fill out forms online, there will often be optional information requested. Do not add any information that is not necessary to register for the website or the app. The less information you offer on the internet, the smaller your digital footprint will be.
Learn about all the privacy settings on your smart devices. If there is an option to go into stealth mode while online, take it! This is especially true when logging into your secure accounts like banking and credit card accounts.
Mass delete personal information
The best solution for maintaining the highest level of online privacy? Partner with a service that specializes in cleaning up people's online information and prevent their reputation from being destroyed.
People-search sites are designed to sell people's personal info. Some sites make money by sharing your name, address, and phone numbers. Others are in the business of publishing mugshot photos and criminal record histories.
Instead of paying an attorney to go after companies that post your personal info, consider a professional internet data removal firm.
Everything from bad news reports to personal information can be deleted or pushed down search pages. That way, if there is bad publicity out there, it will be pushed back where people rarely visit.
Deleting multiple records is not easy. There are many people-search websites besides PeopleSmart. Paying a company to do a complete internet check and cleaning on your name is worth the time and the money.
Companies that specialize in online reputation management know who to contact and what to do when sites make it difficult to remove your name and personal information.
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