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Website Exposes Loads of Personal Information

By: Amy Long Email
By: Amy Long Email

How many people know you on a first and last name basis? Thanks to spokeo.com, anyone can gain access to your personal information and you don't even have to accept a friend request for them to see it.

"You have no privacy anyway. Get over it!" Words of Scott, McNealy, former CEO of Sun Microsystems on today's information and web technology era.

Sites like Spokeo.com back up the notion finding a way to make a buck off your public information by compiling it all in one place.. All someone searching needs is a name.

Matthew Kissner, a FSU student says, "All of this information I knew was online somewhere but this is the first I've seen it all in the same place."

Brett Carey was surprised, "Wow! Brothers, sisters. Yea- It does have street view. Here's my car."

And nearly everyone's "digital identity" is there- whether they know it or not. "That's pretty crazy. Family tree? hum"

Personal information doesn't float away into "Internet Space". Sites, like Spokeo gather it from phone books, social networks, marketing surveys, business websites, even real estate listings. "I think it was just a matter of time before somebody put it all together. I'm okay with it as long as it's not too intrusive." says Carey.

Faye Jones with FSU's College of Law says, "Certain business professionals, psychiatrist, public officials and others who feel that having all this information makes them more vulnerable to identity theft, possibly opens them up to ethical considerations."

Where is the line drawn?

Jones pointed out- Spokeo partnered with a protection agency called Reputation Defender in an attempt to sell a consumer protection for the information Spokeo has already tapped into.

You do have to subscribe to Spokeo to get more and more detailed information and some who say they were okay with the basic version say being able to pay for deeper personal information, concerns them.

The Commerce Department task force did call for the creation of a "Privacy Bill of Rights" for Internet users in December. But for now people will have to go in and manually remove themselves from the site.

Spokeo Directory Removal:
Go to www.spokeo.com

Type in your name and hit enter.

Go to the state you live in

Then go to the city.

Click on your listing.

Copy the URL listing

In the bottom right hand corner go to privacy

Then follow the steps on the website.


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