Getting your privacy back offline

Over the last 10 years I have not really tried to protect my privacy. Its not that big of deal to me.

But I know that a lot of people get pissed when I show them our API from sources we aggregate data from on the PARprogram.

Don’t hate the player… hate the game =P

This morning while building out our system for consumers who wish to opt out, I thought people might find it useful to goto some of the sources directly to remove their data from them selling it.

Lexus Nexis

Lexus Nexis has been the go to spot for students, attourneys and about anyone who needs information about someone. If you have a Nexis terminal you can get an amazing amount of stuff. SSN, Birth, Mothers maiden name, everywhere you have ever worked. (where do you think credit companies get all this info?).

If you want to opt out of the Nexis database you have to go here first.

Nexis terminals are EXPENSIVE. And they want to keep all the data they can. So they do not make it easy for you to opt out of their database.

After you fill out that form it takes you to a page with all your information. You then have to print out that form and mail it to their physical address. They also recommend you fax it.

You also have to provide a copy of 2 forms identification as well as every place chronologically you have worked at for the last 10 years, and a utility bill.

You ALSO have to have a compelling reason why you are asking to be removed. They suggest a copy of a police report of someone threatening bodily harm.

A friend of mine just said that it was an “executive request” and it was all taken out. So I would suggest you go with that.

ADD SIDENOTE – Years ago my old house address was listed on and I couldn’t get it off to save my life until Michael Gray suggested that I use the phrase “executive request” for removal. I did and it was removed days later.

So Lexus Nexis is a real bitch but its the most definitive place out there to get peoples info.

The others are easier:


Experian is a large data seller and about everyone under the sun either buys or sells data to them. Its MUCH cheaper and we have been a customer for a long time.

They are a great resource to get phone numbers, household income, and tons of other data.

In order to opt out of their send a email to with the subject line “PLEASE REMOVE”.

In the body of the email make sure you put:

  • Please do not send me any promotional information from Experian.
  • Please do not share my contact information with third parties.
  • Include any phone numbers,  emails,  addresses you have lived, aliases and anything else you think is relavent (hey if your putting it together might as well include it).
If you want to protect your offline and online privacy the Experian opt out is really important.  If I had to guess I would say 50-60% of anyone in the data business is selling or buying with Experian.

The do not call list:

Ahh remember that awesome thing that was going to stop telemarketers in their tracks! – – Keep in mind that this is a publicly downloadable list and some people will argue that you are providing marketers your information…. thus defeating the purpose?

Here is some other things to opt out while your at it.


Fill out remove request form
You will receive a “Privacy Guide” which contains the final opt-out form for you to mail in.

You can also request to install an “opt-out cookie” for targeted marketing:

Google Phone Directory:

Click here and make sure to enter all your numbers.
Remove all numbers used.

I tried to keep this focused to protect yourself from OFFLINE marketing. If you tried online then… good luck cause every website you visit has a privacy policy most likely that they can sell or do whatever with your data that they want.

Good luck