DeleteMe vs Kanary: A Comparison of Data Removal Services

March 25, 2024

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In today’s digital world, it’s all too easy for your personal information to end up online without your consent. Data brokers gather immense amounts of consumer data and sell it to other companies. This can lead to privacy issues, security risks, and identity theft if your sensitive information falls into the wrong hands.

That’s where data removal services come in. These tools find and delete your personal data from people search sites, data brokers, and other online sources. They send opt-out requests on your behalf to protect your privacy.

In this guide, we’ll compare two popular options: DeleteMe and Kanary. We’ll break down their features, effectiveness, customer support, and pricing so you can decide which one best meets your needs.

Key Takeaways

  • DeleteMe and Kanary both automate the process of finding and removing your personal data from people search sites and data brokers.
  • DeleteMe is more expensive but very effective at getting data removed. It offers concierge support from real people if needed.
  • Kanary is more budget-friendly but scans fewer sites. It offers decent automated removal capabilities.
  • Both services provide monitoring to detect if removed data reappears over time.
  • Consider how many sites you need scanned and your budget when choosing between these two data removal tools.

What Is DeleteMe?

Deleteme Logo

DeleteMe launched in 2009 and is operated by a data privacy company called Abine. They claim to remove personal information from over 650 sites and send over 1.5 million opt-out requests per month.

DeleteMe offers different packages depending on your needs:

  • Individual: Covers just you for $129/year ($10.75/month)
  • Family: Covers 4 people for $329/year ($27.42/month)
  • Team: Custom pricing for businesses

After signing up, you provide DeleteMe with personal details like your name, email, phone number, addresses, and date of birth. DeleteMe uses this info to search for and remove any matching data they find across people search sites, data brokers, and other sources.

DeleteMe offers a few key features:

  • Automated data removal: DeleteMe automatically searches sites and sends opt-out requests on your behalf.
  • Custom opt-outs: You can submit additional info for manual removal from specific sites.
  • Ongoing monitoring: DeleteMe watches sites to detect if removed data reappears.
  • Concierge support: If needed, real people can step in to assist with getting data removed.
  • DIY guides: DeleteMe provides instructions if you prefer to remove data yourself.
  • Dashboard: See an overview of data found, opt-outs sent, and more.
  • Privacy maintenance: Set up recurring service so your info stays removed over time.
Deleteme Dashboard

DeleteMe seems to cover the most data sources of any removal service—over 650 sites and counting. However, the price is on the high side, especially for individuals and families.

What Is Kanary?

Kanary Logo

Founded in 2019, Kanary is a more affordable automated data removal service. They currently scan over 5,000 sites to find and delete your personal information.

Kanary has two main packages:

  • Individual: $144/year ($12/month)
  • Family: $249/year ($20.75/month)

After signing up, you enter details like your name, email, phone, and addresses. Kanary uses this to search people finder sites and send opt-out requests on your behalf.

Here are some of Kanary’s key capabilities:

  • Automated removal: Kanary automatically discovers your info and sends deletion requests.
  • Risk ratings: Profiles are categorized as high/medium/low risk based on the site.
  • Ongoing scans: Kanary rescans sites monthly to detect reposted data.
  • Support: Email and chat support is available if you need help.
  • Dashboard: Check removal status, new exposures, and risk ratings.
  • Affordable pricing: Lower cost than competitors like DeleteMe.
Kanary Dashboard

The main downside is that Kanary currently scans fewer sites compared to DeleteMe—around 5,000 versus 650+ sites. But it costs quite a bit less, making it a more budget-friendly option.

DeleteMe vs. Kanary: Feature Comparison

Here is a detailed feature comparison of DeleteMe and Kanary:

Number of sites scanned650+5,000+
Automated data removalYesYes
Custom/manual removalYesNo
Ongoing monitoringYesYes
Human supportYesEmail/chat only
DIY guidesYesNo
Price for individuals$129/year$119/year
Price for families$179/year$149/year

In summary, DeleteMe scans more sites, offers more customization and human support, but is more expensive. Kanary has automated scanning and removal across fewer sites at a lower price point.

DeleteMe vs. Kanary: Effectiveness Comparison

The most important factor is how well these services actually get your data removed. Based on hands-on testing and customer reviews, here is how DeleteMe and Kanary compare:

  • DeleteMe is extremely effective at getting personal information removed from a wide range of sites. Their combination of automation and human support ensures success.
  • Kanary does a decent job removing data from the sites it covers. But some users report the automated system misses data or doesn’t fully complete removal requests.
  • Both services will monitor sites and send repeat opt-outs if your data reappears over time. DeleteMe appears faster and more effective at ongoing monitoring and removal.
  • DeleteMe users praise their high success rate for getting personal data deleted. Kanary gets more mixed reviews on its overall effectiveness.
  • Both let you log in and check a dashboard to see removal status, but DeleteMe provides more details and transparency.

For actually getting data removed—especially from a large number of sites—DeleteMe seems to be the more reliable and effective service overall.

DeleteMe vs. Kanary: Customer Support

If you ever need help with the removal process, customer service is crucial. Here is how DeleteMe and Kanary compare:

  • DeleteMe offers exceptional customer support with 24/7 live chat and phone assistance. Real people can step in if the automated system struggles to get your data removed.
  • Kanary provides email and chat support, but some users report long response times. There is less human oversight if the automated removals fail.
  • DeleteMe also offers DIY opt-out guides if you want to remove data yourself. Kanary does not.
  • Both services have FAQ pages and knowledge bases to answer common questions.

When it comes to getting human help, DeleteMe is the clear winner. Their concierge approach ensures someone is always available to assist you via chat, email, or phone.

DeleteMe vs. Kanary: Pricing and Plans

The last area to compare is pricing and subscription plans. Here’s an overview:

Individual$129/year ($10.75/month)$144/year ($12/month)
Family$329/year ($27.42/month)$249/year ($20.75/month)
Custom/business pricingYesNo
Deleteme Pricing And Subscription Plans
Kanary Pricing And Subscription Plans

However, DeleteMe lets you add team members for business accounts. Kanary only offers set individual and family packages.

DeleteMe’s Individual plan is cheaper than Kanary’s, while Kanary’s family plan is cheaper than DeleteMe’s. Choose as per your needs.

For the best value, look for limited-time discounts offered by both companies. This can drop the yearly costs down further.

When to Choose DeleteMe Over Kanary

Based on this comparison, here are the main reasons to choose DeleteMe over Kanary:

  • You want maximum removal across a large number of sites (650+ sites)
  • Reliable, effective automated removal is your top priority
  • You may need real human assistance via phone, chat, or email
  • You want custom individual or business plans (not just pre-set packages)
  • Budget is less of a concern and you want premium support

When to Choose Kanary Over DeleteMe

Here are situations where Kanary could be the better option over DeleteMe:

  • You want to spend as little as possible on a removal service
  • You only need automated scanning across around 5,000 basic sites
  • You are comfortable managing the process yourself without much support
  • You don’t anticipate needing phone, chat, or concierge assistance
  • You just need basic individual or family plans (no custom pricing)

For many, the extra services and effectiveness of DeleteMe will be worth the higher price. But Kanary offers decent functionality at a lower cost point for those on a tight budget.

5 Key Tips for Effective Data Removal

To maximize your success using DeleteMe, Kanary, or any data removal service, keep these tips in mind:

  • Be thorough – Provide as much of your personal info as possible when signing up (within your comfort level). This allows for the most complete removal.
  • Check the dashboard – Monitor your dashboard regularly to check removal status and address any issues.
  • Repeat over time – Removal is an ongoing process as data can reappear. Stick with a service long-term for maintenance.
  • Request custom removals – If you find a site not covered, submit specific opt-out requests when available.
  • Do some yourself – You can remove data directly from some sites. Use opt-out guides as a starting point.

Following these best practices will help maximize what these services can automatically do on your behalf.

Can You Really Remove All Your Personal Data?

The short answer is no—no service can remove every single piece of your personal data from the internet. Your info is likely spread too far and wide to be 100% erased.

But tools like DeleteMe and Kanary automate a ton of the tedious work to remove what they can find. They save you time searching and sending removal requests yourself.

The key is staying vigilant and utilizing ongoing monitoring. New data exposures happen all the time. These services give you the best chance of catching them early and getting them deleted ASAP.

So while you can’t remove everything, you can remove a lot more than you could on your own. Don’t let perfection be the enemy of the good here.

Alternative Data Removal Services

Here are a few other top options beyond DeleteMe and Kanary:

  • OneRep – Automated data removal across 190 sites for $179/year
  • Abine Blur – Masks info online rather than deleting for $129/year
  • Privacy Duck – Free Chrome extension to request data removal
  • Data Delete – Formatically emails sites for you for $97/year
  • Privacy Bee – Smaller DIY-focused removal service for $197/year

Each service takes a slightly different approach. Read reviews and compare features to see which aligns best with your needs.

If you’re interested in additional data removal service comparisons, check out this Incogni vs Kanary review from FoneSpy or this Optery vs Kanary breakdown. Both provide a detailed feature and price comparison between Kanary other top privacy protection tools.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is DeleteMe legit?

A: Yes, DeleteMe is a legitimate service operated by the established company Abine. They’ve been in business over 10 years and effectively remove personal data from hundreds of sites.

Q: Does Kanary really work?

A: Kanary is able to automatically remove data from many sites in its database. But it may require some extra effort on your part if removals get stuck or reposted. It helps but isn’t as robust as DeleteMe.

Q: How long does it take?

A: For the initial automated removal process, expect 1-2 months for maximum results. Ongoing monitoring and removal usually happens much quicker after that.

Q: Can I cancel anytime?

A: Yes, both DeleteMe and Kanary offer monthly plans you can cancel anytime. For yearly plans, you can still cancel but may pay a prorated amount for unused service.

Q: What happens when I cancel?

A: When you cancel, the services stop looking for and removing new instances of your data. But they do not repost any data already removed before cancellation.

Q: Is my data secure when I sign up?

A: Both companies use strong encryption and security measures to protect the personal data you provide. This ensures it remains safe.

The Bottom Line

Protecting your privacy is crucial in the digital age. Services like DeleteMe and Kanary give you powerful tools to automatically find and remove personal data from people search sites, data brokers, and other online sources.

DeleteMe offers maximum removal across the most sites along with exceptional human support. Kanary provides basic automated scanning and deletion at a more affordable price point.

Consider how much personal data exposure concerns you, your budget, and the level of support you may need. This will help determine if DeleteMe’s robust premium service or Kanary’s budget-friendly option is the better choice for your privacy protection.