This site promises to do what Chrome's Incognito Mode can’t and wipes ALL trace of your personal data online

a laptop with the incogni.com dashboard shown on-screen

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INCOGNI.COM | GETTY IMAGES | GBN
Aaron Brown

By Aaron Brown


Published: 14/02/2024

- 11:28

Updated: 14/02/2024

- 14:30

With a few clicks, remove your phone number, location, political affiliation, and internet history from thousands of data brokers worldwide

  • GDPR and other legislation has unleashed a new breed of privacy website
  • Incogni is a subscription service that lobbies data brokers on your behalf
  • Brokers sell or rent this data to marketers to better target you online
  • It includes your date of birth, address, phone number, credit history, location
  • The team at Incogni will ensure all of this is wiped from online databases
  • Incogni offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for all new subscribers

If you’re inundated with endless spam emails, scam texts about fake deliveries, and suspicious phone calls, your personal information was likely sold by data brokers to marketers and, sometimes unintentionally, scammers.

These companies are in the business of harvesting information on hundreds of millions of people. Some leading brands boast that they hold up to 1,500 data points on everyone in their database.


This could be location data gleaned from social media posts or GPS data from mobile apps, answers from online quizzes, date of birth from an online form, and sites you've recently visited.

Everything siphoned by data brokers is publicly available or purchased from other companies, like credit card providers, which package up and anonymise some purchasing data.

It can include details like your ethnicity, religion, marital status, hobbies, shows you're watching, online purchases you’ve made, address and phone number, search history, and political affiliation.

If you think that using a private browsing mode in your web browser, like Incognito Mode in Google Chrome, keeps your data out of reach from these companies ― regretfully, that’s not the case. Google recently added a warning to its Incognito Mode feature to keep users in the loop about the risks.

While private browsing modes won’t help ...there is something that you can do.

Under privacy laws, data brokers are required to wipe your information from their database when you ask them. If you want to start removing your information from these vast repositories, you’ll need to look-up the data brokers operating in your country and send individual opt-out requests to each one.

Or a relatively-new service called Incogni will do all of that legwork for you.

The team at Incogni will send requests under GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) both in the UK and Europe, CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act), and other applicable privacy laws to force data brokers to remove your information from their databases.

screenshot from the incogni dashboard that shows a list of data brokers and explanations about what theyre doing

When logged into your account, Incogni.com will show you its progress with deletion requests and provide extra information about the 4,000 or so data brokers that it can contact on your behalf

INCOGNI | GBN

“Most data removal requests are processed within 2 months and we follow up on those that aren’t to make sure your personal information is removed," it adds. You’ll be kept in the loop about what the Incogni team has found and how many records have been expunged with regular emails.

There’s also an online dashboard that lets you track the number of requests sent, the number of records wiped from the internet, and other key data points. With over 4,000 data brokers on the market right now, Incogni says it’d take around 304 hours to do this work manually.

What’s the catch? Well, the Incogni team aren’t doing this out of the kindness of their hearts. It’s a subscription service that costs £5.25 per month.

Due to the amount of time it can take for data brokers to respond and process these requests, you’re unlikely to be able to get everything wiped in a single month, so expect to be subscribed for a little while before your data is back under lock and key. If you stay subscribed, Incogni will regularly re-do the opt-out process to make sure that any recent data stays off the market.

Speaking at the launch of Incogni, which just passed its second birthday, CEO Vytautas Kaziukonis said: “Data privacy is becoming an increasingly alarming issue, yet many people are still unaware of the hidden market that data brokers operatein. As the sensitivity and scope of data they possesswidens, so does the need to be able to opt-out of it.

“However, based on recent studies, the actual process of taking back data is an extremely tedious procedure, which requires legal knowledge and lots of persistence. Incogni aims to help users opt-out of these practices more efficiently and exercise their legal right to privacy easily.”

Incogni is only available in the UK, United States, EU countries, Switzerland, and Canada, since these are the nations with privacy laws that allow the service to help wipe personal information from data brokers.

There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can request a full refund if you're unhappy with the service.

Incogni was devised by the team at Surfshark VPN, a popular Virtual Private Network that includes several useful privacy features, including notifications if your email or password has been included in a recent data breach, and a password manager to generate a new unique, secure passphrase.

LATEST DEVELOPMENTS

According to the Information Commissioner’s Office, data brokers are allowed to rent or sell information on people for marketing purposes in the UK.

However, these organisations can provide other services, including selling lists of contact details, selling copies of the open electoral register, adding additional data points to databases that companies already hold on people, and matching phone numbers for people who you only hold an address for, and removing deceased records from your database and tracking down new contact details for people.

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