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What if I want to hide from the Internet? | your technology | Country


It's nearly impossible to disappear online completely, but there are options to reduce your digital footprint.
It’s nearly impossible to disappear online completely, but there are options to reduce your digital footprint.Andranik Hakopian (Getty/iStockphoto)

Doing self-searching on the internet can set off alarm bells: old photos of yourself, information from accounts, from services opened years ago that no longer have any history, lost comments in blogs… the internet doesn’t forget and as soon as you post something, You completely lose control of the information. On the other hand, personal and professional circumstances change, and this out-of-control information on the web can be a double-edged sword. Political candidates know this all too well, when revision and clean content are essential He ran out of time.

It is becoming more and more common for someone to want to disappear completely from the net, so that when their name is typed, nothing appears at all. It may be due to sudden privacy awareness or work issues, but you are trying to remove your personal information from the internet. Although… is it really a good idea to have no trace on the internet? “Today, not having a digital footprint is counterproductive, and that generates a certain amount of mistrust,” explains Daniel Lopez, CEO and co-founder of Youforget.me, a platform dedicated to managing user privacy on the Internet. This expert recommends “managing our digital selves” so that the information available online is consistent with a person’s profile and “inspires that trust.”

Is it possible to completely disappear from the Internet? “I would say no,” explains Alejandro Abascal, founder of Remove Group, a company dedicated specifically to wiping personal information from the web. “There are many environments on the Internet that are impossible to control, such as dark web“, he adds. However, you can remove the “vast majority of traffic” related to you; in this sense, this expert emphasizes, “new legislation at the European level” is developing to respond to this need, such as “the right to be forgotten, the right to respect the Internet or the law Data protection.” This legislation protects the citizen “unless you are a disreputable person with a public interest, in which case it interferes with freedom of information.”

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In this second case, the line that separates the right to privacy and the right to information is very fine and subject to interpretation, which generates “an important controversy, which generates one of the great debates”, says the expert, in terms of privacy.

Delete inactive accounts

To delete all network traces, you must start with the simplest: delete inactive accounts for those services that are not in use. Unfortunately, unless a detailed record of everything is kept, the only way to view these pages is to do your own Google search to discover the trace of our presence on the net. The bad news is that it’s not always easy to remove personal information, and in fact, there are some sites that make it nearly impossible to remove.

The JustDelete.me online guide offers deletion instructions for major websites, along with a strange traffic light indicating the difficulty level. As we have advanced, some of them appear marked as “impossible” due to the amount of difficulties presented by the service provider.

Delete profiles on social networks

Social networks have become a wonderful repository of personal information where, with a little time and patience, you can map out a person’s profile and activity simply by linking to their posts. Anyone who desires online ostracism and control over their information should consider deleting their accounts entirely. Facebook was at the center of the hurricane and became the target of a campaign that called on its users to delete their accounts, due to the massive data leak that occurred in the Cambridge Analytica case.

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The big problem is that the information that is posted on the networks not only provides great personal information about the user himself, but it is also never deleted. Daniel Lopez warns that “our memory will continue to exist once we are dead, and it is necessary to manage these networks, eliminating those that are not used or that do not represent us.”

removal request

Online Mediation Rules: You sign up for a service and immediately enjoy it. Does the same thing happen when you want to opt out of it? It will depend on the service, but the general answer is no. And to go the other way, if not zigzag, then in some cases impossible. But there is no other choice but to go through it. The first thing a person who wants to completely disappear from the Internet (or at least not be relevant to search engines) should do is search for himself on Google and indicate those sites where he appears.

The best thing in these cases is to use a hyperlink storage service like Pocket or Instapaper to store the different websites where our name appears. For any reason? To request the deletion of data one by one. Service providers “have a thirty-day period” to resolve a data deletion request, and, as Alejandro Abascal points out, “if it’s a large platform, there’s fifteen days more than the response period.”

In the absence of a response from the services hosting our personal information, the next step is to “request removal from the search engines themselves,” recommends Abascal. If the water tap is closed, the flood is over, though not really: “Search engines are only obliged to delete the name,” as photos, videos and other memories will still be visible and on the servers of companies that refuse to delete the account.

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“Sabotage” those who refuse

As noted earlier, services do not always respond to a request to delete data, since all user information remains visible on the network almost always. In this case, the principle “if you can’t defeat your enemy, join him” applies to its fullest extent: the next goal will be to confuse the researchers using their own tricks. In what is known as Filler repellantthe next thing a desperate user could do is fill the web with empty references.

how? Creating pages with a single name with neutral content that does not harm or provide information. As a workaround, it also serves to modify our name and make it incomprehensible in rebel services that deny the user’s right to invisibility.

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