This is a tale, a story, of one person seeing how much information could be had off an email address or website:
Recently i required additional resources for a side project i am in the process of completing, and like many of us i thought about costs, it will take me an hour to complete the task where it will take another person 2 hours @ $40 per hour. Is my time worth $80, at the time it was. So i went to the internets resource of fun-wtf-narwhal-bacon people. REDDIT.
After posting my ad in the correct sub i received 8 PM’s (private messages) all telling me how awesome their work is and showing me examples of “their” work. A few took chances showing me some random bullshit imgur stuff, while others directed me to their website. I took the opportunity to see how far the rabbit hole goes on one occasion. So off i went:
- First stop was the website, i checked out his work and saw he updates his work on a regular basis, great.
- i then went on to www.whois.net where i found his Name, Last Name, Telephone number, Address and other random stuff. That was not enough, i wanted to see how this guy looks. (WHOIS GUARD protects your information, however not available outside of ‘Merica and some registrars)
- Next i popped over on facebook and searched for his full name, there was some results but i know where he lives, so filtered it down a bit and found my resource, and due to him not securing his facebook account i now could take a look into his life. I had a full overview of how many people was on his last trip to the airport to collect his grandmother, also i now know his registration of his vehicle and i know his married with two children. What more could i want, right?
- Next i hoped over onto Pipl.com, i found websites where he is mentioned, how far he is with a current project, how many other websites he has, had a quick look at his MySpace page (yeah i know lol)
Overall i was happy about the background of the guy who was going to do a $80 quick job for me. It took me all of 6 minutes to do (*i scroll click, you should too!)
What each and every person should be doing is trying to find out how much of themselves is online and is it something you would want people to see, here are some online tools which makes it possible to track you down and get information:
- Pipl.com – The search is great, however sometimes you will end up with spammy searches and results.
- Zoominfo – This shows you your current position and employment history
- Facebook – A simple search will generate some images and if unsecured you will find loads of info
- intelius – Although there is a fee, you can do a full background check.
- Criminal Searches – It does what it says.
- White Pages – track down people, their addresses, and their phone numbers
- The most important one : Google.com – you will be amazed at how efficient the search engine is at crawling the web and refining your search will yield some great results by searching : “John Smith” , “ad: John Smith” and there is many more…
If you are not paranoid then ,by all means, sleep well, however there are people which are in the process of trying to close all holes they can find on their past, hope it helped. To mention Google also tracks where you come from and how you move through the web and what you are searching for, why do you think after searching for countless car insurance websites you suddenly are faced with car insurance Google ads on websites offering AdSense on their websites? The proof is also the “(not provided)” you will see in Google analytics. Facebook also tracks you, more than you would like to know. Every website which has a facebook like button on it and you are logged into facebook, you can just “like” the page and post and it accumulates.