Personal Background Check – Give Yourself An Online Checkup

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Look yourself up online

Get your personal background check

Did I get a surprise when I looked myself up on the Internet. I “Googled” my name and I managed to find out all sorts of things that I would rather not be found. A lot of it was true but there were also a few things that were not. A great deal of it was simply embarrassing and I started to wonder if there was any way to make it go away. A tall order I thought.

A lot of my friends have looked themselves up online and were surprised by what they found. Some of them were horrified by what could be discovered. This is especially true if they searched on a specialized web site like the one in this article. Just imagine what other people might think if they came across it.

Is your online profile stopping you getting a job?

It’s becoming standard practice for employers to use the Internet to check out prospective employees. It’s so easy for them to do that it doesn’t make any sense for them not to. So what will they find if they Google you? What else might they find if they use a public records background checking website?

I make a point of not posting too much personal stuff on the Internet if I can help it. I have a Facebook account but I post on it very rarely nowadays. Not everyone thinks like this though and I have to say neither did I until recently. If you put something on the Internet then it’s potentially there forever and if it’s on the Internet and it’s been made public even for a short while then there’s no telling where it might turn up.

Then there’s the stuff that other people post about you. Some people take great delight in posting pictures of me in embarrassing or unflattering situations then tagging me in them so that there can be no doubt that it’s me. I would rather they didn’t do this but what can you do?

Why is all this important? Well if there is information about you on the Internet then anyone, including your employers or prospective employers, can potentially find it. Ask yourself “would I give myself a job after finding the information available on the Internet”?

What can I do about my damaging online profile?

When you find information about you that is defamatory or incorrect you can email the webmaster and ask them to either remove it or print a retraction of some sort.

But unless the website is doing something illegal, posting your copyrighted material without your consent for instance, then they have no obligation to comply with your wishes. All you can do is ask politely and hope. Some webmasters will do as you ask and others will not.

The best thing that you can do is start posting good things about yourself all over the place. Post to Facebook, Linkedin and other social media sites. Make sure that there are some stories about you doing good things out there. Donate to charities that publish the names of donors.

By splashing your best information around the Internet you will not only be balancing out the bad things that employers and other people can find but you will also be pushing the bad stuff down the search engine listings. If someone searches for your name and the first two pages of results contain all your best posts and pictures then they probably won’t go further.

Inteligator logo

Inteligator for unlimited free background checks

Author: Steve Gee

Personal Background Check – Give Yourself A Cheap Online Checkup

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Cheap nationwide background check

Have you ever Googled yourself just to see what comes up? Yes I bet you have. I know that I’ve searched for myself online more than once and so have most of the people that I know. I’ve even used an inexpensive online background check website to find out even more personal stuff about myself.

Most of my friends who have looked themselves up were surprised by what they found and by just how much of it they could find. Some of them were horrified by what they found. They were even more alarmed when they realized that anyone could find that stuff just by doing a few simple searches on the Internet.

Is your online presence affecting your job prospects?

Have you been turned down from any job applications that you’ve made recently? Were you left wondering why you didn’t get the job even though you are well qualified and a perfect match for the position? It’s possible that they are being put off by what they are finding out about you on the Internet.

Try searching for your name on Google and then do a thorough personal background check online. It doesn’t take long and it isn’t expensive so you have nothing to lose by investigating. You do have a lot to gain however.

It’s worth remembering that if your friends and prospective employers can all find this information about you then so can your dates. Has your relationship unexpectedly ended?

What can people find out about you?

Anyone searching for your name in quotation marks on Google may find all sorts of things including your Facebook and Linkedin profiles and any other social media sites that you belong to. If you’ve ever been mentioned in newspapers or other media reports then these may show up in searches too.

As you are reading this you may be thinking how important it is to make sure that your social media profiles and other stuff that you post on the net is all clean and wholesome and always shows you in a good light. If you are anything like the rest of us you are probably thinking that you wished you had thought about this a few years ago because the damage now has already been done.

There isn’t much you can do to stop other people posting embarrassing pictures of you though is there?

Your social profiles are important and you may be able to clean them up to some extent but there could be other information that is far more damaging to you out there somewhere.

Have you ever been arrested or convicted?

If you have ever been arrested, even if you were completely innocent of all accusations and never even been charged, then the news sites may have published the details and the arrest report may be found on the Internet somewhere.

Arrest reports in the media almost always show you in a bad light. News organizations are quick to splash your name and reason for arrest everywhere but they are far less interested in removing these reports or even printing updates when you get completely cleared of everything. I guess that bad news always makes them more money than good news.

If you do a more focused and comprehensive background check on yourself using a public records web site then you may find even more damaging information.

What can I do if I find damaging or incorrect information?

If you find that a web site is displaying incorrect or defamatory information about you then you can contact the site owners and ask for it to be removed or corrected. This can prove to be very difficult if they refuse your request and contacting all the sites that you want cleaned up can be a daunting task.

You should also look yourself up on public records databases to make sure that everything is up to date and accurate. Again you can contact the website owners to ask for the information to be updated.

Can I get help?

Yes there is help at hand. You can use an online service that specializes in restoring your reputation and privacy. Once you have given them all the relevant information they will do all the hard work for you. You can sit back and relax while they they contact the appropriate webmasters and start reducing the volume of unwanted information that is embarrassing you.

It doesn’t happen overnight but after a while you should notice that the Internet is starting to paint a better picture of you. You can help this picture to improve by making a point of posting all your best stuff on Facebook and anywhere else that you can get your posts to show up publicly.

This way you will eventually push all the remaining bad information about you down the search engine listings never to be seen again.

Inteligator logo

Inteligator for unlimited free background checks

Author: Steve Gee

How To Restore Your Reputation And Privacy

Friday, January 31st, 2014

What shows up in a Google search?

Do you avoid googling your name because you are afraid of what you are going to find? Does it worry the pants off you that anyone can find this information just by doing a simple search of your name? I know that it worries me to death.

What would a prospective employer think about all the embarrassing reports and photos that they can easily find when they do a casual search of the net? If you were the employer would you give yourself a job after finding stuff like that?

What would your date think of the things he or she might find just at a time when the relationship is starting to get interesting? Would she find an old arrest record from the time you were detained but not charged because they had the wrong guy? Perhaps it’s even worse than that.

How to get help with removing bad stuff from the Web

Once something is on the net it is very difficult to get it removed. Sometimes it’s impossible to remove all traces of it even if what’s published is totally false or even infringes your copyright or some other rights. But you can now get professional help with this. There is an online service that will do their very best for you to get things taken down from places where they should not be.

They can’t guarantee to take every trace of everything bad about you off the Internet. Especially if you are trying to remove things that are actually true like a real conviction or something. In most cases Privacy Online can reduce the damage to something more manageable.

Managing what’s left

When Privacy Online have done their job you should see a reduction in the amount of damaging material that can be discovered online about you.

At the same time as you are getting help to have embarrassing things removed from the Web you should consider making a concerted effort to post good stuff about yourself on the net. Write about all the good things you do and post it to Facebook and Google plus and other social media sites. Make a donation to charitable sites that publish the names of their donors. Do something worthwhile in your community and get it reported in online newspapers. Find online forums that interest you and take an active part in discussions.

Everything that you do online has the potential to show up in a Google search listing and the idea behind posting good stuff all over the place is to try and drown out the bad stuff. Your aim is to have nothing but good reports show up on the first page of results when someone searches for your name.

How does the removal process work?

Working with Privacy Online to get your reputation back is as simple and as easy as they could make it. They do all the hard work for you when it comes to approaching webmasters and submitting takedown forms etc. The steps involved can be summarized by:

  1. You place an order with PrivacyOnline
  2. Provide your full information
  3. Upload supporting documentation (such as photo ID, case sealed documents, expungement information, etc…)
  4. Provide a top list of URLs you’d like us to approach for removal
  5. They process your information and start requesting removals
  6. This process takes anywhere from 24 hours to 60 days, depending on the websites

Using PrivacyOnline to recover your online reputation and privacy has to be one of the easiest and most cost effective ways of tackling your poor online footprint. Sign up now and see an improvement in your reputation faster and better than anything that you could do by yourself. Just tell them what you want removed and sit back and wait for the results.

Author: Steve Gee

How To Remove Information From Google Search

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

What shows up in a Google search?

Have you ever Googled yourself and found that a load of embarrassing images and information pop up? It can prevent you from getting jobs, lose you your friends and even attract hate mail. Would you like to do something about it? If the answer is yes then read on.

I’m going to tell you how you can get your information and images removed from the Internet and Google’s search listings. It’s a simple and straightforward process but it can be time consuming and sometimes difficult bearing in mind that your details could be all over the place. The more web pages that are embarrassing you the more work you have to do to get rid of them.

You may decide that you need some help to do this and if this is the case then you can enlist the services of an online reputation and privacy management organization. Just give them as much information as you can about where your information is being displayed and let them do the hard work for you.

How do search engines and search result listings work?

Before you can start trying to remove things from the Google search results or Yahoo or Bing or any of the search engines for that matter, it’s vital to understand how your images and information get into the search results in the first place.

The first thing to understand is that nothing is ever stored on Google servers so the web page that the search result refers to must exist for someone to click through and see your information. So if you manage to get the embarrassing information removed from the web page then it will not be seen when you get to the page.

The aim of a search engine is to deliver links to the very best and most relevant web pages it can find so they send out automated software robots or ‘spiders’ as they are called. These spiders crawl through the links in all web pages they can find, indexing the pages as they go. They are relentless and typically crawl through the same web page every few days or weeks. It isn’t in the interest of the search engine to offer you a link to a page that doesn’t exist and it isn’t in your interest either.

Your photos and information will be removed in time

I know how this works by bitter experience. I run a few web sites and from time to time there are technical difficulties which take them off line for a while. If this happens at a time when the spiders want to crawl my pages they will be unable to see the content. Now the spiders know that web sites have trouble occasionally so the page may not get withdrawn from the listings immediately. It will most certainly disappear if the spider fails to find the page on subsequent visits however.

when a web page is removed from the Internet then the Google listing will also be removed eventually but it will not happen immediately. The reason for this delay is because Google stores a cache of the search listing on it’s servers ready to be shown when you do a search. The web page will remain in the listings until the Google spider gets around to reading the web page again and decides that it isn’t there anymore.

A similar thing will happen if some of your information is being shown in the description of the search engine listing. This is the worst scenario because the reader doesn’t even need to click through to the page to see your details. In this case when you manage to successfully remove your information from the web page it may take a little time for the search engine to update the listing in it’s cache. It will vanish eventually however. You need to be patient when it comes to the Internet.

Identify the urls of the offending web pages

The first step towards getting your photos and information removed from the web is to find and identify all the web pages that are displaying information that you would like to have removed. You need to note the url of the page and the specific information on the page that you are objecting to.

When you have a list of urls to target the next step is to approach the webmaster of each site your information appears on and ask them to take your details down. If you can supply them with proof that the information is untrue or a good reason why the data is damaging to you then it may help the process.

Finding webmaster contact details

There are often several ways to find the contact details for the webmaster of a site.

  1. Generally the easiest way to find contact details is from the contact page on the website itself. Most reputable websites want to be contacted so you should look for a link to the contact page somewhere on the site. This will be the easiest way of making contact.
  2. Use an Internet service that is often called ‘whois’. There are many places offering this service but you may have to try more than one before you find useable contact details. A simple Google search for ‘whois’ should provide you with starting points. The whois listing will often list an email address for the webmaster but not all whois services provide the complete details. Whois listings are generally free to access.
  3. if you can not find contact details for the webmaster then you can try contacting the site’s hosting company. This information is usually listed in the whois information. They should be able to give you contact details for the webmaster or even deal with your complaint directly if it’s a serious matter of copyright or defamation etc.

Write to the webmaster requesting image and information removal

You should bear in mind that the webmaster has no obligation to comply with your wishes unless the offending content is infringing copyright or there is slander or defamation involved.

You must write a nice polite note to the webmaster explaining why you wish to have the offending content removed. You must also supply the exact location and nature of the information to enable the webmaster to locate the content and delete it.

If you are asking the webmaster to remove your mugshot or other information because it was put there after you were arrested but you have subsequently been cleared of the offenses then you should send all applicable proof that this is the case.

Not all information will be removable

let’s face it. Most webmasters are good people and will comply with your reasonable requests for data removal. Unfortunately not all will be so obliging, especially if they are not in the US. It may take several follow up emails to get some web owners to take action and sadly there will be some who will simply ignore all your communications. Unless they are legally obliged to do what you are asking then you may have to accept that you will never succeed in removing all offending material from the Internet.

Privacy Online will do all this for you

Getting stuff removed from the Internet can be an arduous and time consuming task so it isn’t something you jump into lightly. Sometimes you have no choice unfortunately. Personal information about you published on the Internet can range from being slightly embarrassing to preventing you from getting jobs, losing your friends and even attract abuse. If you have a business then your online reputation can make or break it. It is vitally important that you keep it under control.

Why do all of this work yourself when you can get an online service to clean up your reputation for you? It’s time consuming and generally hard work so let Privacy Online restore your reputation and your privacy. Do it now.

Author: Steve Gee