Anyone who works with computers learns to fear their capacity to forget. Like so many things with computers, memory is strictly binary. There is either perfect recall or total oblivion, with nothing in between. It doesn’t matter how important or trivial the information is. The computer can forget anything in an instant. If it remembers, it remembers for keeps.
Data brokers have pioneered advanced techniques to collect and collate information about consumers’ offline, online and mobile behavior. But they have been slow to develop innovative ways for consumers to gain access to the information that companies obtain, share and sell about them for marketing purposes. Now federal regulators are pressuring data brokers to operate more transparently.
In 2012, a report by the Federal Trade Commission recommended that the industry set up a public Web portal that would display the names and contact information of every data broker doing business in the United States, as well as describe consumers’ data access rights and other choices. But, for years the data brokers have been too busy to build a centralized Web portal for consumers. So, we decided to help them out and StopDataMining.me was born!
Go there. Then, one by one, follow the links to the data mining companies “opt-out” forms. These companies ALREADY know who you are.