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How do I remove myself from a website I didn’t ask to be on?

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I’ve been included on a website designed to assist job searchers to find employment, a fine purpose. However, I’m not a farmer looking for people to pick my apples, yet that is what the website tells the world. The website is obviously successful in spreading the word as I get about 10 calls a day from job searchers to the extent I have to filter all calls through an answering machine. Not the best solution particularly for family and friends who want to contact me. The originators of the website do not answer any of my calls for action. What can I do either on my own or via some authority with power to justify or correct unwanted entries of this sort?

Unfortunately, I’m not aware of some authority who corrects these kinds of situations.

If somebody puts your information on their website, even if it’s incorrect or wrong, there’s really no way to force them to remove the information. That is as long as it’s not libelous or slanderous (but those are legal terms and I’m no lawyer, so I can’t advise you on that).

In your case, you are in Australia and the website is in the Netherlands. Because the legal system is different in different countries, that makes it even more difficult.

So what can you do in this case?

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Contact the website

What you did in this situation is exactly what I would have done: start contacting the website.

Now, you haven’t heard back from them – keep trying. Find any form of communication with them. Look at other content, such as articles, published on their website to see if there’s contact information or sales information. Sometimes they can help you.

Get help from the host

If that doesn’t work, try looking for anything associated with the domain registration for that website. That’s usually another good place to get contact information.

Using the IP address of the website, you can refer to tools like whois.domaintools.com to actually determine where the website is hosted and by whom. If they’ve got a shared hosting account or somebody’s providing those servers, then you could actually contact the individuals hosting those servers to go out and see if they perhaps can influence this website on your behalf.

For instance, all of the domain registration for my Ask Leo! website is associated with my name and my contact information. But if you look up the IP address, you’ll see that I am hosted at Liquidweb, which is a company that specializes in hosting websites and servers. While it may be a long shot, it is possible that you could contact the hosting service and they may be able to intercede on your behalf.

Anything else?

I’m not sure that there’s much more that you can do on your own if the site or its host isn’t responding to you. One last ditch effort is to hire an attorney who is well versed in international law. Like I said, that’s not going to be cheap; it’s not going to be easy, but it’s about the only alternative that I can think of if this problem rises to that level.

Ultimately, it might be easier and cheaper to just change your phone number.

1 thought on “How do I remove myself from a website I didn’t ask to be on?”

  1. I would start with getting my phone number changed.

    Secondly – try logging into the site and cancel the service. You may have to use retrieve password function but it is worth a try. Doesn’t cost anything except some time.

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