Data Removal Services - Needed, Effective, & Worth the Money Spent?

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Hi All - being aware for years that 'our' personal information is collected and stored on hundreds (if not thousands) of data broker sites, I decided on some more investigation to decide if a 'removal service' would be useful, if at all effective, esp. with the charges asked.

A PC Mag article (quote below) by Neil Rubenking and one on CNET were helpful in my assessment - Neil was more positive and CNET less so. The service Optery seems to be one of the top options - would cost me about $300+ for the plan wanted x 2 people - SO, what are others doing and thinking about getting involved with these personal removal services. Thanks - Dave

P.S. already asked my IT son - he does not use or recommend any and says a 'waste of money'!

Personal data removal services can help, scouring the many people search and data broker websites for your personal data and acting as your proxy for requesting the removal of your data. They can submit removal requests or give you DIY instructions to do the job yourself. Which service will suit your needs best? We’ve rounded up a varied selection to help you choose. Read on for our top picks, followed by what to consider when choosing the right service for you.
 
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How do they know they can do what they say they are going to do? After it's done, how can the things they remove be double checked? They can say we removed everything you wanted, but how do you know?

That's only one of the reasons why I feel these things are a waste of money.
 
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P.S. already asked my IT son - he does not use or recommend any and says a 'waste of money'!

I would agree with your son 1000% and add the fact you have basically no control on what they are going to clean up and God forbid if they cleaned up stuff that was vital and you wanted to keep.

There are lots of excellent FREE applications to help you do the job yourself and you have complete control on what you remove but it does take some dedicated time and effort on the user's part to do so. There's no real magic bullet that can do the job properly with no input of time or effort.

Some users experience a super cleanup when their boot Drive containing all their data fails completely and cannot reasonably be recovered or is stolen and they don't have any backup. Definitely not the best or recommended cleanup method. 🙄





- Patrick
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Raz0rEdge

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Waste of time and money. Most sites don't listen to those requests and are not reachable. Your information has leaked and spread far and wide and it's impossible to put that genie back in the bottle.

You should do the smart things related to security.
  • Use a password manager to create very secure password for all sites
    • Rotate passwords on a quarterly basis
  • Enable 2FA/MFA on any and every site that supports it
  • Freeze your credit report when you aren't actively looking to open new accounts
    • Unfreeze only during the period of expected new activity and then freeze again
  • Routinely go and delete accounts on websites you don't actively use
  • When signing up for services, if you have an GMail address, use the trick of adding a tag to see who is leaking your email. That is, if your email is [email protected], then you sign to Best Buy with [email protected] or something variation there of. You should get emails from Best Buy only on that email, the moment you get spam on there, you know Best Buy has either lost or sold your email.
  • Use "throwaway" email addresses for one-off sites from places like mailnator.com
  • On Social media keep all of your accounts private and info shared only with you. Share your content with just your friends and be selective about who is a friend
  • Become a hermit. 😃
 

Rod


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Taking on board the truth of what everyone has said already I have had one of these services recommended to me by friends in the advertising industry called DeleteMe. I strongly advise you research the pros an cons on this service before investing because it is a subscription service and supposedly gets better over time. I do not use it myself so I cannot give a personal opinion but if you truely want to invest in a service like this do the research and let us know what you find.
 
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RadDave
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Taking on board the truth of what everyone has said already I have had one of these services recommended to me by friends in the advertising industry called DeleteMe. I strongly advise you research the pros an cons on this service before investing because it is a subscription service and supposedly gets better over time. I do not use it myself so I cannot give a personal opinion but if you truely want to invest in a service like this do the research and let us know what you find.
For those interested in the service above and many others, please check the two links left in my OP - from my discussion with my son, the responses in this thread, and comments in the CNET link in particular, I do not plan to subscribe to any of these offerings. Dave
 

Rod


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Personally, I agree with your son Dave.
 

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