Suppression VS Deletion

Earlier today, I got some marketing material, through the mail. Due to my privacy habits, this is quite rare.

Now when following the trail to where they got my info, a data broker, I noticed they used the term Data Suppression. From reading their site, they claim:

Suppression involves retaining just enough information to ensure that your preferences are respected.
Your details are only retained as a suppression record which is screened against future supplies of data and where there is a match between a new supply of data and a record on the suppression file, the new supply matched record is rejected, thereby preventing us from reintroducing the suppressed record into our systems.
If we delete your details entirely we have no way of ensuring that your details are not reintroduced to our database.

Honestly, it jus sounds like a fancy way of saying “Opt out”. So here’s the question. Would you agree to the suppression, or go for the deletion?

  • Deletion
  • Suppression
  • Whichever is easier
0 voters

Edit: Added poll.

It sounds like they are using the data to ensure they they don’t get it again. I like deletion but it sounds like they are truly respecting your privacy in this case.

Yeah, it sounds good. I just don’t entirely trust a lot of these brokers. How much is “just enough”? That’s a huge subjective variable.

I ended up going for the deletion. Even if I need to do some occasional whack-a-mole, i tend to sleep a little easier.

I would have went with deletion as well. Suppression sounds to good to be true. Lately it has been opposite day.

Personally I feel deletion is the better option because suppression does mean that they are retaining your data in some form, which I see as a risk in itself.

Unfortunately a lot of these data brokers aren’t legally obligated to delete your data, so they never will. Suppression is essentially just opting out from them making your data publicly available, but often it’s the only option available.

Their point that if they delete their data on you then they might repost it in the future is a good one. These companies don’t care about you, and if they buy your data again from somewhere else they won’t know that you don’t want that data reposted if they deleted all their information about you previously.

If you just want to make sure your data stays off their people search sites or whatever, suppression probably makes the most sense, since they’ll match their future data against your opt-out request. The whole data broker situation is a shitty one all around though.

This is why companies like Kanary or DeleteMe can exist solely to clean up this mess for you :slight_smile:


From the technical POV both approaches are kind of the same loop.
In both cases there seems to exists, implicitly, an automated business workflow where a lot of tracked data is imported from one or more suppliers.

In the suppression case, there’s a filtering step where a minimal amount of data is used to skip on your tracking data(obviously the one that can be identified, leaving the rest in a grey area).

In the deletion case, assuming that a deletion request happened just once, then there’s no guarantee of a future reinsertion of your data in the system by the means of automation, meanwhile if you join services like DeleteMe that automate such deletions on your side, there you’re still kept in the loop of: automated import, discovery and deletion requests.

It’s hell, and I wish that the tracking was merely about statistics and grouped metrics about the tracked data, not the whole quasi-spying apparatus :expressionless:

Data brokers are going to do sussy things anyways. Go for a deletion (suppression will be fine as well), and focus on finding the source of this data. It’s more important to do it this way because then other brokers can simply take this data.

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