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In my work as a digital nomad and content creator, I get to visit a lot of places. I take precautions to travel safely and the same goes for my digital life too. For example, I’ve been a VPN user for the last 10 years and send secure emails. Still, I figured we can’t be too careful about our data these days. So I aimed to increase my privacy and reduce my digital footprint, and what better way than with data removal services?

Most data removal services work the same way, but this particular post evaluates Incogni—a service provider that promises to help you “take back control of your data.” I’ve heard some good things about it and decided to give it a try. In this Incogni review, I’ll tell you what I like about it and what I don’t. And of course, we’ll see if they have the capability to deliver on their promise.

Incogni Rapid Rundown Rapid Rundown

Incogni is often touted as the best data removal service on the market. But I wanted to test whether that's actually true. So I set off to perform this full Incogni review. I was surprised by how fast and easy the whole process was. As soon as you subscribe, the process starts right away. I like how Incogni gets right down to business by contacting data brokers and people search sites immediately. Then, they file personal data removal requests on your behalf. You can keep track of the removal process through the Incogni Dashboard.  

I overall found Incogni very simple and easy to use. From pricing options to its user interface, Incognito was very straightforward to use. You don’t have to wrack your brain to figure out what to do. On the flip side, that also means Incognito isn’t packed with features. For instance, I’ve tried DeleteMe and they offer reports, email masking, and custom requests. 

How is Incogni in reality?

I personally found Incogni to be an amazing data removal service. It can even be had for less than $1/month. Give Incogni FREE version a test run now. Let's get into the full review!

Pros and Cons

I will soon give you the full Incogni review. But before that, here’s a snapshot of the advantages and disadvantages of getting an Incogni subscription.

Pros
  • Simple and straightforward user interface
  • Uncomplicated pricing
  • Offers 30-day money-back guarantee
  • More affordable than other data removal services
  • Keeps you updated of their progress
Cons
  • Customer support is limited to email
  • No free trial

The Full Review

It’s finally time to dive into the meat of this Incogni review. You’re about to learn everything you need to know about this ultra-minimalistic data removal provider. Ready? Let’s start with pricing. How much does Incogni cost?

Highly recommended

Incogni Pricing Pricing

Incogni only offers two subscription plans. There’s an Annual plan and a Monthly plan. That’s it! Like I said earlier, straightforward. The monthly plan costs $12.99 per month, while the annual plan translates to $6.49/month. When I choose an online service, I generally prefer those that allow me to pay monthly, so points to them for having this option. A monthly plan gives me the option to cancel after the first month or so if I don’t like the service. 

Bear in mind though, the data removal process can sometimes take multiple months. So many data brokers are slow to act and hence require follow ups. For me, this justifies the annual plan, which is also substantially cheaper. You’ll want to factor this into your buying decision. 

Screenshot showing Incogni subscription plans

So Incogni's monthly plan isn't exactly the most ideal given its cost. But you’ll be happy to know that this subscription based service offers a 30-day money back guarantee. This allows you to cancel your subscription and get your money back within 30 days after sign up. That's if you’re not satisfied with the service. For comparison, DeleteMe only gives you a refund if you cancel before you receive your first Privacy Report. Since DeleteMe’s first privacy report usually arrives within seven days, that means you’re only given 7 days to cancel to get a refund.  I’m happy with the full month that Incogni gives for a new subscriber to really explore if it’s worth it.

Data Broker Companies That Incogni Contacts

As of this writing, the number of data brokers Incogni contacts is 149. This number may change from time to time. Incogni constantly adds new data brokers. However, some may have merged and others may have closed shop. Thus, the number can go up or go down. However, looking into other data removal service providers, I found that some of them cover a larger number of data brokers.

Some of the brokers covered by Incogni include:

  • AccuData
  • Bookyourdata
  • Comscore
  • Dice
  • Ekata
  • Fetcher
  • Homemetry
  • Indtrue
  • And many others

Features and Capabilities

As hinted earlier, Incogni isn’t full of features. But what other features do you really need if all you want is an easy way to remove your data online? Incogni already takes charge of sending data removal requests. It also takes care of follow ups. So, all you’ll likely need is a way to track their progress. 

An Incogni subscription allows you to track progress through these two menus: Dashboard and Detailed View. You can find them at the top of the page when you login to Incogni.  

Cropped screenshot of Incogni showing highlighted Dashboard and Detailed View menus

Incogni Dashboard

The Incogni Dashboard provides crucial status information about your data removal requests. It shows three key figures on requests—sent, in progress, and completed. It also gives the number of suppression list entries you are on. A suppression list is a list that names customers whose personal info will no longer be collected, traded, or stored by the broker moving forward. This means the more supression lists you are on, the better for you.

Screenshot of Incogni status information

In some instances, the Dashboard may also contain alert dialog boxes. These are for issues that require further action on your part. Your actions will help Incogni speed up or complete the data removal process. For example, the boxes might ask you to select certain profiles or provide additional information.  

Screenshot of Incogni alert dialog boxes in the Dashboard page

Further down, you’ll see activity logs pertinent to the data removal requests. In most cases, it will just show when a data removal request was completed. 

Screenshot of activity logs on the Dashboard page

Detailed View

This page contains all the details about specific data brokers and the official data removal requests. You can filter the results by broker type, severity score, compliance score, and request status. Let’s talk about each filter in more detail. 

Screenshot showing them upper half of the Incogni Detailed View page

Broker type

There are two types of data brokers: public databases and private databases. Public databases focus on selling individual personal information. Private databases, on the other hand, focus on selling personal data in bulk. Due to the volume of data, private databases often contain more sensitive information. Marketers use these types of data to create targeted ads. 

Screenshot of the Incogni Detailed View page, with the Broker Type buttons highlighted

Compliance score

The compliance score shows how fast and reliable a data broker is in complying with removal requests. Take note however, that the “scores” aren’t numeric but are qualitative. They are based on Incogni's internal algorithm and evaluation system. Data brokers can be Compliant, Inconsistent, Resistant, or Undetermined. 

Screenshot of the Incogni Detailed View page, with the Compliance Score drop-down list highlighted

Severity score

This qualitative score indicates the level of data sensitivity and associated risks a data broker has. The scores are rated High, Medium, and Low. Data brokers with High scores store a lot of sensitive data and are susceptible to identity theft. 

Screenshot of the Incogni Detailed View page, with the Severity Score drop-down list highlighted

Request status

This simply indicates the status of the removal requests sent to a particular data broker. The status labels are In Progress or Completed. A request with the status In Progress means that it is still being processed by the broker. A Completed status means that the data has been successfully removed.

In the list of data brokers, you may get more detailed information for each broker by clicking on them. This will expand the entry and show more details. 

Screenshot of the Incogni Detailed View page, with the list of data broker companies highlighted

Here’s how an expanded entry looks like. You’ll see some relevant information like the average resolution time, a brief description of the company, associated risks, and so on. Ideally, you’ll want to see the broker marked “Suppressed”. This means the broker has promised not to collect and store your data anymore. A “Completed” status only means the broker removed your data for now. It’s not a guarantee they won’t collect it again in the future.  

Screenshot of an expanded entry of a data broker company in the Incogni Detailed View page

Ease of Use and Setup

Incogni is easily one of the most, if not THE most user friendly data removal service out there. Well, as mentioned earlier, it doesn’t have a lot of features to begin with. Some may see that as a drawback, but others (I, for one) will like how everything is focused on the main objective. The only page that requires some user interaction is the Detailed View page. And if you get stumped there, you can click the Interactive Tutorial to get assistance. 

Incogni Account Creation

The Incogni registration process is pretty straightforward. Incogni doesn’t require as much personal data as other similar providers. I find this a plus for Incogni. Others require more info from you when you’re trying to reduce your data online. Anyway, when you sign up, you’ll only need to provide:

  • Your email address,
  • A password for your account,
  • Your name,
  • Your phone number,
  • Your date of birth, and
  • Your physical address

You’ll also need to sign an authorization form. The contents of the authorization form serves as a limited power of attorney. This means you are granting Incogni permission to send removal requests on your behalf. 

If you think you’re sharing a lot of personal data with Incogni, you should see other information removal sites. Other providers ask for more personal data that may seem needless. This info could be your employment history and even information about your relatives. 

Interactive Tutorial

The Interactive Tutorial is a tool that walks you through the different components of the Detailed View page. You can activate it by clicking the link as shown below. It will then start orienting you with the different elements of that page. 

Screenshot of the Incogni Detailed View page with an arrow pointing at the Interactive Tutorial link

Incogni Customer Support Customer Support

Since there’s really not much you can do once the data removal process is underway, it’s unlikely you’ll need customer support. However, should you need further assistance, you can scroll to the bottom of the page and click Help. This will bring you to Incogni’s Help Desk. 

Here, you have 3 options:

  1. You can submit a request. This will trigger Incogni’s email-based customer support. This is the only kind of human-assisted help you’ll get from Incogni. 
  2. You can type a question. This will allow you to trigger a search against Incogni’s Help Desk articles. 
  3. You can click on any of the general topic buttons. This will allow you to browse to relevant topics and Help Desk articles. 
Screenshot of the Incogni Help Desk page

FAQ

Data broker sites or data brokers are companies that collect personal data and then sell it to customers. These customers are companies that have use of the data. These could be marketing firms, insurance companies, financial institutions, and others. The data may be used for analytics, ad targeting, credit scoring, client profiling, and others. It all depends on the customer and the industry they are in. 

Certain businesses may find data brokers beneficial for marketing and other similar purposes. Consumers, however, could view them as a threat to privacy. Targeted ads, for one, can sometimes be too invasive. Also, if all this data falls into the wrong hands, they could be used for identity theft and other malicious activities. These are the main reasons why some people are willing to pay for services like Incogni. 

Data brokers get personal information from public records, social media sites, and other websites. Some brokers may also source the data from other data brokers. As long as your personal data can be obtained from any of these sources, brokers will continue to collect it and have access to it. 

Even if you manage to get data brokers to remove your data, new data brokers may pop up and take their place. Some data brokers are also only temporarily compliant to data removal requests. They may re-add your personal information after some time. In other words, having your data removed can be a never ending battle. That’s why you need help from sites like Incogni. They can continue to send removal requests for as long as necessary. 

If you’re up to it, you can have your personal information removed yourself. Here are some tips to carry that out. 

  1. Identify the data brokers that have your personal data. This can be quite challenging. Unless you’re familiar with the various data brokers that are out there, you have to manually search online. Run a search for your personal information and then see if you can identify the companies that have them. 
  2. Look for a data broker opt-out option. Some data brokers provide an opt-out mechanism for people who want their personal data removed. It’s similar to unsubscribing to a service, except that you’ll have to go through some additional steps. Be prepared to submit some personal info to prove your identity. 
  3. Contact data brokers and request data removal. Some data brokers may not have an opt-out feature on their website. In cases like this, you’ll have to contact the company directly and file official removal requests. 
  4. Configure online privacy settings on your social media account. Social media sites are one of the main sources of personal data. If you want to keep data collectors away from your data, stop data collection at the source. Log on to your social media account and go to the privacy settings. Configure your settings such that data collection is disabled. 
Screenshot showing X app's "Data sharing and personalization" setting

Except perhaps step 4, all the steps outlined above can be quite challenging. Considering the huge number of data brokers out there, the entire process can take a great deal of time. We’re not even taking into account the new data broker sites that open from time to time.  

If you value your online privacy, it would be much better if you hired data removal experts to do the job for you. Service providers like Incogni know what to do and who to contact. My work keeps me very busy and mobile so I really don’t have time to deal with stuff like this. Service providers, though, are also able to send and follow up opt-out requests. And, with their automated process, they can accomplish the task much faster. 

Data Removal ServicePriceData broker sites covered
DeleteMe$129/person/year750+
OneRep$179/person/year199
Privacy Pros$999 one-time190+
Incogni$77.88/person/year149

Yet, it can. Search sites like Google source their data from data brokers. Once your data is removed from these online databases, it will eventually be removed from Google’s search results as well. That said, the process can take some time. If you still see your customer data, it’s probably because Google failed to update its search results. You can try using Google’s URL Removal Tool to fix that. 

Screenshot of Google search results for the keyword "trevor james"

Incogni is owned by VPN provider Surfshark. As a leading VPN provider, Surfshark is known for its commitment to privacy and security. Surfshark is based in the Netherlands, a privacy-friendly jurisdiction. Incogni isn’t registered there though. Rather, it’s registered at 506 S Spring St #13308 Los Angeles, CA 90013, the United States of America. 

By virtue of its registered address, Incogni is covered by the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). CCPA provides consumers several data privacy rights, including:

  • The right to know
  • The right to delete
  • The right to opt out
  • The right to correct inaccurate personal information
  • The right to limit the use and disclosure of sensitive personal information

Incogni leverages the CCPA to have data brokers remove people’s personal info from their databases. Another similar law they can cite is the EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

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TREVOR JAMES

Full Time Digital Nomad

About The Author

Hi! I’m Trevor James, a Canadian YouTuber who travels the world full-time. I make videos about food, travel, and cybersecurity. I have been traveling the world and making videos for over 10 years. You can read more about me here.

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