Our personal data saturates the internet. In essence, the more active we become in this digital landscape, the more our data proliferates.We willingly share certain aspects: our identities, social media posts, photographs, and professional backgrounds.
However, there's also a myriad of details — such as our addresses, phone numbers, family data, health records, and earnings — that we'd prefer remain confidential. Despite our best efforts, some of these facts inadvertently make their way online.
The unsettling reality is that "data brokers" continuously broadcast, manipulate, and magnify our personal/private details. These entities relentlessly scour the internet, amassing any accessible data, crafting detailed profiles, and then marketing these profiles to advertisers, cybercriminals, or any interested party willing to pay.
The gravity of this situation cannot be understated.
I remember my dismay when, upon inspecting some of these platforms, I stumbled upon my profile. Beyond the fact that both my property's value and income were inaccurately inflated, I was horrified to discover a public link to my wife's relative and our confidential health records.
On a brighter note, U.S. legislation mandates these broker websites to honor removal requests. This means I could technically approach such a site and, via a form or email, demand the deletion of my personal details.
However, the challenge arises from the sheer volume of these platforms, with new ones emerging continually.
HideMe boasts a user-friendly front end paired with a complex backend that persistently combs the internet, automatically dispatching removal requests to data brokers.