FRESNO, Calif. - Your life is up for sale. Dozens of websites are collecting as much personal information as possible and offering up their databases for a price.
Nicki Dillinger, from WTVG, said, "Anybody can go and just decide to look you up and find your current address and go knock on your door if they really wanted to."
Your address is just one puzzle piece the sites can reveal. We showed Fresno Police Detective Doug Reese what the site MyLife.com had on him.
Reese said you have probably given this information to various organizations online by signing up for social media, registering for sweepstakes, or just ordering services like cable or internet. It's perfectly legal and the sites can have some positive purposes.
Vanessa Waite with Spokeo said, "All of the success stories really fall into two categories-- helping to connect and helping to protect."
Spokeo gave us a video of a father and son reunited because of their service and they take credit for reunions all over the country. They said Spokeo can also help protect people from catfishing scams on dating sites or identify scammers making phone calls. But Reese said it is probably best to erase as much of your information as possible.
"It's out there. You want to be concerned. You want to be proactive about it. Try not to be overly paranoid about it."
How to protect yourself from identity theft
While the info is still out there, we also searched for several of your favorite ABC30 reporters and anchors and found a lot of private information.
One of the websites promised to "expose Corin Hoggard for who he really is" and offered to reveal two criminal records associated with me for just a few dollars.
So coming up on Action News at six, I'm going to find out what they know and I'll share it with you.
How to remove your information from Beenverified.com
- Scroll to the bottom of the screen
- In the middle left side of the page under the "help" section, click Remove my info
- A new page will load, prompting a search for your information
- Search and find info
- A new page will load with the words "Send my opt-out request" at the top
- Submit email
- The website will send you an email, asking you to confirm the removal of information
- A second email will confirm your information removal.
How to remove information from Truepeoplesearch.com
- Go to https://www.truepeoplesearch.com/removal
- Verify you aren't a robot, and select proper boxes
- A new page will appear, prompting you to search for your name
- Select your name and information
- A new page will open detailing information, scroll to the bottom, select "Remove this Record"
- A new page will open and say note that your request for removal was taken and that your information should be removed within a few hours