Citizens For A Better Norwood

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Do you want your personal information on

One of our readers alerted us to the search engine that specializes in “organizing people-related information from phone books, social networks, marketing lists, business sites, and other public sources…By searching beyond the Web, Spokeo yields much more comprehensive and targeted results than general-purpose search engines for people-related queries.” One of us immediately plugged in her name and almost just as quickly hit the lower right “privacy” button to delete her page, which contained a lot of incorrect information, including the description “not interested in politics.” Really? That’s an immediate fail. But the real issue was having so much personal information published in the first place.

Next, we searched for and found various family members, like a married nephew incorrectly identified as Asian instead of Caucasian. His two children are misnamed, and, interestingly, his wife is listed as the “decision maker.” A female friend in South Norwood is identified as male and living in a household with five members when there are only two. She’s a college graduate described as having “some college” living in a “below average” neighborhood that is roughly only 25% Caucasian. Another Norwood friend’s long time ex-wife is listed as his spouse. We doubt he and his current and former wives will be pleased about the error.

We’re pretty horrified by, and we want to thank our reader for asking us to let everyone know that pages can be deleted by hitting the privacy button.