23rd May, 2013 | Articles |

Successfully Disappearing of the Internet

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There may come a time when you decide that you want to disappear from the Internet for whatever reason. Considering the Internet's long, winding 'paper-trail', this can prove to be somewhat tricky. Your name will in some way, shape or form be present on social media networks, Goggle search archives, blogs and a multitude of other sites. To successfully disappear takes time and effort. Here are some tips on where to start with your efforts to erase your Web presence.

Social Media Networks

The best way to begin is to delete/ deactivate your social network accounts. Facebook offers two options. The first is to deactivate your account. This will give you an option to go back later. Alternatively, you can delete your account by going into the security tab in 'Account settings' and selecting 'Deactivate my Account'.

Once you get past the repeated questions why you are deactivating and if you really are sure about this, the account will finally be deleted. Deleting your Twitter account will be equally tedious - none of the social media sites like to see people leave.

Photo and Video Sharing Sites

If you ever uploaded pictures to Snapfish, Flickr, YouTube and so on, now is the time to go back and either delete all the images or delete your account completely. The latter will obviously save time, especially if you can't remember what you uploaded when and where. A good way to check for images is to run a search with your name via Google Images. If an image pops up, click on it to see where it is located, then go there to delete it or request for it to be removed.


Next, delete your Blogspot, Tumblr and/ or WordPress accounts. If you have guest blogged on other sites, you need to go back and delete your posts. Alternatively, asking the sites' administrators nicely may result in them doing it for you. The same goes for comments you have made on other blogs.

Newsletters and e-Business Accounts

Your next step is to unsubscribe from newsletters, RSS feeds, and so on. Accounts with e-businesses should also be deleted to prevent your details from making the rounds among third party vendors.

Google Searches

As Google tracks most searches, you should stop using the Google search engine. There are other search engines that do not track you - Duck Duck Go is one of them.

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