This page is only available in English. Try a translation if you don’t understand English.
Why did you create AccountKiller?
On many sites we experienced it’s hard or often impossible to cancel one’s account. The question ‘how to delete my … account’ is asked many times in search engines. Answers can be found on many sites, mostly fragmented. One central point to easily find the fastest way would be nice, we already thought in the year 1965. From that point we started collecting deletion instructions. There you go, here you are. Additionally we created some kind of ranking (‘white’, ‘grey’ and ‘black’ sites).
What do the (site, list) colours indicate? (white, grey, black)
On a white-listed site, it should be easy to automatically delete your account. Perhaps with a couple of clicks, using a deletion link.
A black-listed site indicates it’s probably impossible or highly difficult to get rid of your account. In some cases we hand you an email address so you can contact the site anyway. Otherwise, you may visit the site and search for contact information, and ask them for account removal.
Finally, the grey-listed sites are somewhere inbetween. It may cost your some irritation or effort – but it should be possible to terminate your account. This is the case when you need to send a mail to the site, send a message using a webform or even ring them.
Why do sites often make it difficult or even impossible to delete your account?
The answer is often: customer retention. In other words, they wish to make money with your data. However, for a market to function efficiently,transparency is required. If sites are not transparent, you will incur some loss: time, money, and… your mood.
Alternatively, developers may simply be ignorant, lazy or incompetent, i.e. not being able to create some account deletion function.
On sites with lots of messages, comments, etc., deleting an account and its messages can ruin a stream of text or delicious discussion. What about that?
That may be so, by deleting both the user and the comments. Another solution is to delete the account, but leave the message, replacing the user name/info by ‘Deleted User’, often implemented by creators of forums. In cases where your submitted content remains visible while your account gets deleted, you may want to try to delete and/or anonymise those data before deleting the account. This may be a painstaking event, so be aware! Alternatively you may try to contact the site and ‘simply’ request deletion of your data. This may not be possible due to technical or legal reasons, but if you don’t try you won’t win. Also see the next question.
How about data retention after I deleted my account somewhere?
It usually takes much effort to go through Terms of Service, User Agreements, Privacy Pages and the like, to find out about data retention. Actually most of the time such info is simply absent. AccountKiller’s first purpose is to get rid of your account, and often you cannot be certain that all your data are truly erased (even if a site claims it does). Reasons may be: (1) legal: it’s not allowed somehow to delete your data, especially in the case of commercial sites, (2) during a deletion, a dump file of your history may be kept somewhere, (3) as proper developers know, even if you anonymise your data, often history records of those changes are kept in the database, (4) creators of a site are too lazy or incompetent to create full deletion or simply don’t want to do it, 5) fill in yourself…. So, there you have some reaons. Unfortuantely and no matter what others say: personal requests for deletion and anonymisation are no golden bullets for your privacy whatsoever. So it’s a good start for a publicly visible account to be deleted, the backgrounds in the database may remain unclear, but in general only pose a risk in the case of serious hacks (or malicious database owners). However if you wish to give it a try: anonymise or delete your submitted data manually and/or contact the site ‘simply’ requesting deletion. If you can’t find a contact address, a whois command for the domain name may help you further. Now and then we provide this. But you know what we said, the costs of your trial may outweigh the benefits. Therefore the final tip is: simply don’t fear too much, while making sure you don’t anything serious to hide. 😉
I lost my username or password, what can I do?
If you lost your login/username and don’t know how to delete your account now, this can be a hint: contact the site anyway, by finding the contact address or a webform (or even a telephone number if you like). Tell them your situation and ask what would be best. Perhaps you should identify yourself by sending a copy of your passport or identity card. If you used your real name or anything that may identify you, your account may be tracked successfully.
I submitted a site, but it’s not present. What’s up?
Many people submit sites. Perhaps we simply didn’t have time to check it yet. Or the information was incomplete. Or it’s in a language we don’t understand. Please submit them in English.
Some deletion instruction pages are in language X, but the instruction text is in language Y?!
To reach more people, the page templates are in a couple of languages. But we don’t speak all of them. Most instructions are in English anyway, we suppose nearly everyone speaks it. Otherwise, use e.g. Google Translate.
My site is listed, but the information is false. What can I do?
Sites change all the time. It’s hard to keep up with all changes in real-time. Besides, most of our content is submitted by our users and errors can creep into the content. If you feel your site is wrongfully listed, please contact us to inform us about any false claims or information.
In order to track the usage habits of our visitors, we collect information using Google Analytics – such as your IP address, your ISP (internet service provider), your web browser, the time you visited the site, and which pages you viewed during your visit. We do not gather or store any information which can be used to identify you personally (such as your name, email address, physical address, telephonenumber, bank account number or credit card numbers).
How did you gather all deletion instructions, and can I use/spread them?
Most of the pages were acquired by reading through sites (ToS, PP, FAQ), creating accounts ourselves and trying to get rid of them. Then, some content was learnt from visitors telling us what to do and from other sources on the web. This is all information to be found in the public domain (rarely with the exception of personal tips from visitors) and therefore cannot be copyrighted. Actually we appreciate it if you spread the information from our site.
Mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org – we’ll be delighted to talk to you. If you have a Facebook account, please visit our Facebook page and leave a message!
Who the heck is Ria Bava?!
Sorry, we don’t know her.