How to erase yourself from search engines

Posted at 10:19 PM, Apr 19, 2018

Googled your name lately? You might be surprised by what you find.

If someone has your name and your approximate age, they can find out a lot about you online.

Digital journalist Yael Grauer says people search sites like Spokeo, Whitepages, and MyLife make a lot of your personal information widely available.

Public records, court documents, real estate, voter rolls,  are all places Grauer says your information is pulled from.

And it's up to you to get it taken down. In an article for the website Motherboard, Grauer gives a list of people search sites and how to request that your information be removed.

Some sites like MyLife, require a phone call or email. But others have more hoops for you to jump through.

"They want you to mail your driver’s license," Grauer said.

Even then, removal may not be permanent.

"You have to repeat this process every three months or so," Grauer says of the privacy service.

Grauer says the privacy service, Delete Me, offers to continuously have you removed for an annual fee.

But Grauer says the easiest way to keep them out of your business is to "be careful about not giving out your information as much as possible."

That could mean using a P.O. box or your work address to receive mail — or using your initials instead of your full name when making purchases.