How to Delete Online Accounts to Protect Your Identity

Alexander Freund

Having too many digital accounts raises your risk of data being misused or stolen. Here’s how to clean house. Deleting online accounts is one of the best ways to protect data security and privacy. The less data you have stored on websites across the internet, the safer you are from being hacked or personal info being stolen.

To improve your own personal data security, which stemmed from like Facebook’s privacy scandals at the social media that happen throughout 2018 also a number of essentially defunct platforms, such as Myspace and Google+, have all suffered data breaches that affected millions of users even if they haven’t used the platforms in years.

Data breaches that compromise old accounts can lead to identity theft. If you’re no longer using a website or app there’s no reason to continue to keep your username and password.

When you’re ready to delete your account you can follow the directions below for a number of services. Here are few that include Facebook, Google+, Myspace, and other platforms that you might want to quit, despite them being popular. A number of platforms let you download your old data, like posts and photos, before pulling the plug.

These instructions are from a computer browser, but the steps are usually similar on a phone or in an app.

Facebook

If you’re sticking with Facebook, it’s a good idea to check privacy settings. There are some details to consider. Facebook says it won’t actually start the process until 30 days after you click delete, and it may take up to 90 days for your information to disappear.

To delete Facebook account: Click the down arrow in the top right > Settings > Your Facebook Information > Delete Your Account and Information > Delete Account > Type in your password to confirm > Delete Account.

Google+

Many Google+ users forgot about the social media platform for years until news broke fall 2018 that data could have leaked from more than 50 million accounts. Google said there was no evidence that data was actually taken, and the company is shutting the service down for consumers in 2019. However, if you don’t want to wait.

To delete Google+ account: Click Settings on the left-hand side of the screen > Delete Your Google+ Profile > Enter your password to confirm > Check the box to confirm that you understand this will permanently erase your data > Delete.

Myspace

Myspace is still around. If you feel nostalgic you can find some old photos or relive your past. In 2016, hackers leaked the login credentials for 360 million accounts, including many that had been sitting around years. The company invalidated those accounts’ passwords, so you may need to use the forgot password tool if you want to delete your account.

To delete your Myspace account: Click the gear icon in the bottom left > Account > Delete Account.

Whatsapp

To delete your Whatsapp account: Click the menu button in the top right corner > Settings > Account > Delete my account > Enter your phone number to confirm > Delete my account.

LinkedIn

To delete your Linkedin account: Click your profile avatar in the top right corner > Settings and privacy > Account > Closing your Linkedin account > Select a reason why you’re deciding to close your account and click Next > Type in your password to confirm.

Twitter

To delete your Twitter account: Click your profile avatar and select Settings and privacy from the menu > From the Account tab, select Deactivate your account > Deactivate > Enter your password to confirm > Deactivate.

Snapchat

To delete your Snapchat account: Head to the Delete Your Account portal in a browser > Enter your username and password > Continue.

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