This Startup Can Prevent Online Stalking

google stalking

Photo: Nikko Russano / Flickr, CC

Whether you like it or not, your personal information is out there in public and is being sold online.It can cost a lot of money to scrape that information off, not to mention a lot of effort.

To make it easier to clean up the information trail, Rob Leshner founded SafeShepherd

SafeShepherd provides real-time alerts when your personal information appears on the Internet, and automates the process of removing it.

“When we fix a report, what we’re really doing is automating the opt-out policies of a given site. Each data-broker has different requirements to remove a record; some require a fax, some require snail-mail (It’s 2012!!!), some require a web form, and some require an email. We automate as much of that process as we can; the only manual part of the process is that we still manually send letters for a few sites,” Leshner said.

He also pointed to many incidents where stalkers bought personal information off the Web.

For instance, CBS reported that a stalker was able to buy his victim’s personal information like her Social Security number, employer’s name, and work address, from the Web. The stalker later murdered the victim outside her workplace.

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