OkCaller is an online directory that has over 800 million phone numbers and addresses on the site. This kind of reach is extremely large for a simple directory, and the number of people who visit the site in order to find information is substantial.
What makes OkCaller.com unique is that they actively encourage users to update and add information to it.
Most of the other websites that collect contact or personal information about people are the opposite. They do the data collecting and aggregating, and the only thing they need to know from you is if you want to opt out or not (they certainly hope not).
OkCaller bucks this trend with their model of encouraging contributions from anyone who has information already on the site, or wants to create an account. Their reason for this is that they want everything to be as accurate as possible, and when that is the case they believe more people will want to use the site.
The site is essentially a simple platform where you can edit your listing or search to find information about other people.
In addition to that, OkCaller will also create an address book automatically whenever you look up someone else on the site. It also has an interesting feature that allows users to send messages to any phone number via SMS or email through their own platform.
One of their more popular features is the ability to tag a specific phone number as “not safe” which can mean a number of things. The most common reasons for this are telemarketers, prank calls, or bill collectors.
Doing this helps other users on the site easily check if others had a problem with a number that called them as well, so they can block it and put it out of their mind. Retroactive phone number searches is one of the most popular reasons that people use the site.
Compared to a lot of the other private info sites that exist right now, this model seems a lot more transparent and likable right?
However, some are concerned with how easy it is to find contact information about other people on the site.
Sure, it’s great that you can update your own information if you want to be found. But what if you don’t?
There are plenty who think that what you can find on OkCaller is actually too invasive and breaches their sense of privacy.
So here’s what we did:
We put together a comprehensive resource on OkCaller.com so anyone can get a full understanding of what the site does, and how you can opt out if you want to.
What can you find on OkCaller?
Compared to a lot of other people search and private info databases, OkCaller.com is actually relatively straightforward in this regard.
What makes is a priority for so many people is the fact that they have information on so many people, not how much they have per person. However, you can definitely make the argument that what they share is still too much for comfort.
Right now OkCaller has information primarily on individuals living in the United States. They currently cover a little bit of Canada as well, but have not expanded into other countries yet.
The main takeaway here is that if you are living in the United States, some information about you is probably in their database.
Here’s what you can find on OkCaller:
- Phone numbers
This information is mainly for individuals, not businesses. Still, they do have information on over 20 million businesses so it’s absolutely worth performing a search for yourself if you are a business owner.
While this is not a lot of information compared to other sites, it can still do a lot of damage when in the wrong hands. To make matters worse, other people can actually add your information to the site if they choose (the verification is easy to trick).
Another concern with OkCaller is that they don’t require you to create an account in order to search through their database. While this was done with the intent of helping well-intentioned individuals use their product, it’s one less barrier for those who have malicious intent.
This might not seem like a big deal, but at scale if can be very helpful. Often times small data aggregation sites will use simple scraping software to find information about other people and add it to their own site.
When you force a user to sign up in order to access information about someone else, this makes it just that much harder for another site to scrape this data. It’s not a surefire defense by any means, but it absolutely helps cut down on the frequency of it happening.
To that point, the fact that OkCaller is a free service and does not require a subscription to perform searches also increases the likelihood of your information falling into the wrong hands. By now you can see why a lot of people want to go through the OkCaller opt out steps, despite their good intentions behind the site.
How do they acquire your information?
With over 800 million names, addresses, and phone numbers available, OkCaller certainly has found an efficient way to acquire all of this information.
A fairly common concern is that they might be getting their hands on it through illegal methods, but that is certainly not the case. Even if you feel that their site violates your privacy, you need to accept that they are not breaking the law with their database.
In order for OkCaller to find your information and share it on their site they rely heavily on public records that can be viewed by anyone. They are simply finding them and aggregating all of it within their site.
This might come as a surprise to some people, but plenty of contact information can be found via public records and that has been the case for a long time. The game changer is when sites like this pull all of the information into their own databases to make it even easier for anyone to find it.
How to opt out of OkCaller
Fortunately, while it isn’t viable to remove all public records about you that exist, you have a better option.
In this case you can go through the OkCaller opt out steps to get your information removed from the site. This is a quick way to solve one part of your problem (we will get to the other in a moment).
Sites like this have to fulfill your request to opt out and remove your information from their site, so all you have to do is complete the following steps:
Step 1: Create an account to opt out from OkCaller. This only takes a second and will not add any new information to the site.
Step 2: Search your phone number on the main search page.
Step 3: Scroll down and find the “This is my number” button and select the “Opt-out / Unlist” option.
Once you have done this you have successfully completed the OkCaller opt out process!
What you need to do next
Unfortunately all of your worries aren’t over. There are still plenty of other similar sites that do the same thing, and more are being created each day.
If this concerns you and you want to keep your information private, you have more work to do. Fortunately, we have something that makes the whole process a lot easier.
First of all, our reputation management software will help identify if private information about you is being displayed online in search results (this is how almost everyone looks for information about other people online). It also walks you through the opt out process for all of the biggest sites like OkCaller so you can easily remove your information from those sites.
It also helps you protect your information online by showing you how to control your online presence. This means that when anyone looks you up online they will see positive content that you are comfortable with, and not private information like addresses and phone numbers.
Having a two-pronged attack is by far the best way to protect your information online these days, so give our free software a shot!