I’ve spent a career leading news media companies. One thing you learn as a media professional – you can’t opt out of your online reputation. If you participate in the world, you have a reputation online.
That being said, I’ve met many individuals that are proud to share that they are not online.
Depending on my mood, I let the statement slide. If the effort seems warranted, I will jump in with the following four reasons they do indeed have an online reputation:
1) Data Aggregate Sites Exist. A LOT of Them.
There are companies that exist solely to collect your personal information from online sources. They set up technology to crawl the internet.
2) They Make a LOT of Money.
These companies are motivated to collect your personal information to make money off of it …and it is big business.
3) They Do Whatever It Takes To Collect Information.
These companies send representatives to courthouses and other government offices to gather information that may not be available online.
4) Your Information Is ALWAYS In Demand.
Businesses and others buy your information from these gathering companies to use for their own needs.
You Can’t Opt Out, But You CAN Dig In
While you can’t opt out of having an online reputation, knowledge is power. My recommendation? Hire a professional, become informed and mitigate your exposure.