Do you want to cover your tracks? Do you want to escape the internet? While online fame excites some, it can be a huge burden for others.
It’s not always possible to completely remove yourself, but you can use this wikiHow to remove most of your personal information from the Internet and social media applications.
Step 1: Consider alternatives to deleting your accounts.
Because most of these steps cannot be undone, you will lose information, lose any market presence you have built online, and in some cases, you will lose the ability to recreate your account under the same name.
- Are there other ways to fix this problem, such as changing my online name or using a different email account than my regular one? For example, if your current email address has nasty online associations, you can create a separate one and use it exclusively for professional activities like sending resumes and applying for scholarships.
- If old tweets bother you, try deleting all your tweets instead of your entire account.
- If you’re trying to avoid cyberbullying, check out Dealing with Bullies for tips on staying safe.
- If there is a problem with false or defamatory information about you on the Internet, seek legal advice in your jurisdiction.
Step 2: Google yourself.
The best way to know what information you will need to delete is to find out what information is available to others. When you google your name, enclose it in quotation marks to see only results related to your name. Make a list of all websites where your name appears.
- If you have a popular name, try including your city or occupation in the search.
- For tips on how to get the best results for your Google search, see How to use advanced Google search techniques.
Step 3: Contact Google to remove your information.
Good news for European citizens: Starting in 2014, you can request that Google remove your personal information from search results. Click on this link to go to the removal form.
- Regardless of your location, you can ask Google to remove outdated content from your search results. The only requirement is that you must remove or change the content in such a way that the Google version becomes incorrect. The removal tool is located at https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/removals?pli=1.
- After following the steps in this article, the search results mentioned in them should eventually disappear unless they are archived elsewhere.
Step 4: Delete your social networks and game accounts.
Given how popular social media and gaming services have become, these are usually the first places people try to find you online. It can be hard to remember all the accounts you’ve created over the years, but deleting yourself from the most popular sites is a great start. This won’t necessarily solve your “deep web” memory, but it’s a good start. Use this list to get started:
- How to Permanently Delete a Facebook Account, How to delete an instagram account
- How to delete a twitter account, How to delete a youtube account
- How to delete a LinkedIn account, How to delete a twitch account
- How to delete tiktok account, How to delete pinterest account
- How to delete your Foursquare account, How to delete minecraft account
- How to delete steam account, How to delete a Soundcloud account
- How to delete flickr account, How to delete a Google or Gmail account
- How to delete your MySpace account
Don’t forget sites like Ning, Yahoo Groups, and private forums. If you are unable to delete your private forum account, you can usually ask the forum administrator to delete your posts.
Step 5: Delete your website and or blog/website.
If you’ve created a blog or personal website using a free service like Blogger, WordPress, or Medium, you can delete all of your content and then close your account. If you have a paid web hosting account through a hosting service, contact that service to close your account and delete your website.
- If your website or blog was public, chances are it was archived using the Wayback Machine Archive.org. Read this wikiHow to find out if your site has been archived. While there is no official way to unzip your site, some webmasters have managed to send a DMCA copyright infringement notice to [email protected] .
- Be sure to delete all your accounts with third party advertising tools, stats monitors and plugins.
- If you have submitted articles to online publications or content production sites, you can remove them by contacting the site’s editor.
- If other blogs have republished your content, contact the blog owners and ask them to remove your name and content.
Step 6: Cancel your dating profiles and subscriptions.
While you cannot use your real name on your online dating profiles, they are still associated with your email address, phone number, or other identifying information. Read these wikiHow articles on how to remove yourself from some of the most popular dating sites and apps:
- How to delete tinder account, How to delete your OKCupid account
- How to delete an eHarmony account, How to delete your MeetMe account
- How to delete your Zoosk account, How to delete Ashley Madison profile
Step 7: Remove your name from data broker websites.
If you’re over 18, chances are you’ve found some Google search results for your name on various people search websites (eg Spokeo, InstantCheckmate, Intelius). These sites buy your personal information and make it public, sometimes for a fee. The good news is that you can usually remove yourself from these websites without much hassle. Here are some quick links:
- Instant checkmate: https://www.instantcheckmate.com/opt-out
- Intelius: https://www.intelius.com/optout
- FamilyTreeNow: https://www.familytreenow.com/optout
- Spokeo: https://www.spokeo.com/optout
- Contact your telephone company to make sure it is not listed on the Internet. If so, ask them to delete your data completely.
Step 8: Cancel your purchases and billing accounts.
Sites like eBay and Amazon display public versions of your profile to other users, and this information is easy to find on search engines. You will definitely want to delete these accounts, but if you want to take it a step further, you can also delete your payment accounts like PayPal and Venmo. Check out these wikiHows for tips on deleting your accounts on popular merchant sites and payment services:
- How to delete amazon account, How to delete an eBay account
- How to delete a Venmo account, How to delete a PayPal account
- How to delete your Square account
Don’t forget about your local ad group subscriptions, your Craigslist account, and your Etsy profile.
Step 9: Work your way out of indelible bills.
Some sites do not allow complete deletion, forcing you to simply “deactivate” (your information remains in the system) or leave your account. If you need to delete your account for serious security or legal reasons, please contact the site owner or engineers; At the very least, you should be able to change your name to hide your true identity. If you can’t get someone to intervene on your behalf, try the following:
Sign in and delete all personal information. If you can’t leave some fields blank, replace them with an obviously fake name, such as Dingus Oppenheimer IV or John Smith.
Do this for all of your non-deleted accounts, and be sure to change the information on each account so they can’t be traced back to each other.
If you try to provide a different email address, the site will send you a confirmation email, meaning non-existent addresses are out of the question. This brings us to the next step.
If you don’t have an unidentifiable email address that can be associated with your account, create one on a free email host and make sure the address you choose doesn’t contain any information that could identify you.
Once you have a new anonymous email account, add it to your indelible profile and verify. After that, make sure your real email address doesn’t show up anywhere else on that account.
Step 10: Consider paying a professional and Cancel your email account (optional way).
If you’re having trouble or just feel like the task is too much, there are companies that specialize in data deletion. These services are not free, but their cost may be justified if the reasons for deletion are urgent. Look for a service that:
You can remove it from the “deep web” and not just the obvious services.
You have valid agreements with data source providers.
He has good reviews.
When you’re happy with the removal of your online presence, you can delete your email account. Wait to delete your email account until you’ve verified that your online presence has been deleted; your email address may be needed to contact removal sites.
If it’s not possible to trace your email address to your name, just make sure your name and personal information don’t appear anywhere on your profile.
For example, if you’re using a free web-based email service like Gmail or Outlook.com, sign in to the site, open settings, and change all instances of your real name to something else.
If you are paying for an email service, please contact the company for available options. Even paid webmail needs to have live people to contact.
Always make sure you don’t throw away any important information you want to keep before deleting your account. Transfer all the necessary materials to a memory card or other storage.