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Busted? Mugshot Removal 101
“How do I remove my mugshot online? is a question we receive often. And if you or someone close to you has ever been arrested, you know how unflattering mugshots can be.
Unfortunately in this digital era, mugshot sites have made criminal arrest records readily available to anyone with an internet connection. With all your information out there, mugshot removal may seem impossible, but stick with us and we’ll show you what you can do.
As times change, information is becoming increasingly available to everyone. This is both good and bad, as we all benefit from the surplus of resources and answers at our fingertips. However, if there is something negative about you online, this content might make you feel trapped.
The importance of an individual’s online reputation score is quickly becoming a personal asset. Gone are the days of first impressions. Nowadays, individuals will browse sites such as Google, Facebook, Instagram, and many others before they meet someone first to face.
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How Can I Get My Mugshot Removed for Free?
Mugshot removal is more cumbersome for those with a troubled past. Arrest records or anyone with a criminal background may discover that their public records continue to haunt them. This includes people that are applying for a new job, applying to schools, or possibly wanting to purchase a new home. Some adults are testing out the waters with online dating and may have a hard time making connections. The arrest information collected during the booking process gets posted to the web where anyone can find it using a simple Google search. Unfortunately, free mugshots removal is a difficult and time-intensive process. When you want mugshots removed from online search, your best bet is to hire a professional mugshot takedown service provider.
Thanks to the readily available information available online, personal privacy is slowly slipping away. For that reason, Net Reputation is here to assist you with enhancing your image online and improving your overall reputation. In the following sections, we will discuss the mugshot removal service we offer, as well as tips and tricks you can use to remove mugshots from the Internet efficiently and for free.
Why Is Your Mugshot Online?
So how do mugshots make it onto a search engine? In other words, why are your mugshots online? The process is much simpler than you might expect. There are two primary sources for these unflattering images: arrest records and information scraped from the web.
Arrest Records from Law Enforcement Agencies
This may come as no surprise but mugshots found on the internet are considered a public record or public information. During the booking process, a booking photo or mugshot is taken. If you’ve ever been arrested for a crime, or even brought in for questioning about a crime, the law enforcement agency may have taken photos of you. Criminal documents like an arrest record (along with other court records) must be accessible to anyone. The reason for this is that there are public records laws on the local, state, and federal levels. Many jurisdictions have public records laws that require posting information about recent arrests. Government entities, including county and city law enforcement agencies, are often required to post arrest records and other public records online. Law enforcement websites may publish a wide variety of records, including:
- Booking photo or mug shots
- Arrest record
- Sex offenders information
- Personal information
This free and easy access to public records allows anyone from the general public to visit a criminal database, copy the information and paste it wherever they choose online. The only exception would be if a particular case was sealed or expunged. These motions ensure those are removed from a public record or struck from your record altogether.
Public Records and Web Scraping
Around the world, automated search tools scour the web, exploring every available database for personal information and records that can be used. If you’ve been arrested, your information may be posted on a county or city database, and data brokers WILL find it.
Mugshot publications are owned and operated by individuals just like you or I. These are NOT legal entities, law firms or anything of the sort. Celebrity mugshots sites have risen in popularity over the past decade; anyone can search mugshots of their favorite sports star or movie celebrity either through these sites or by using online search engines. Such sites post mugshots and other embarrassing details, claiming they do so for informational purposes. The truth is that these sites are out to make money by driving traffic to their websites. Access to these free mugshots is made even easier by search engines; with the sheer amount of traffic going to mugshot websites, Google and the other major search engines tend to rank these sites at or near the top of search results.
The ownership of mugshots sites is important because it makes the process of mugshot removal much more attainable.
Let’s look at a site like Mugshots.com for example. The owners of Mugshots utilize automated “scraping” software and tools. This allows them to capture new arrestees’ information directly from county websites. These arrest profiles are what you tend to see rank on Google search results.
You are seeing your mugshot on page one because you may have little to no web presence. For this reason, Google is going to crawl everything it can find in hopes of discovering something to show you.
This is why individuals with common names such as “John Smith” tend to never suffer from this issue. If your name is unique it would be a different story. 9 times out of 10 you will see your mugshot photo under images on Google, Bing, and/or Yahoo.
Find Mugshots Online in Google Searches: Tips
Finding your mugshot online is a fairly straightforward task. If you’ve already found it and are only interested in mugshot removal, skip to the next section. If not, head over to Google and enter the following query (replace names with yours):
- “John Smith” arrest
- “Mike Smith” mugshot
- “Mark Smith” Sarasota arrest
- “Jack L. Smith” arrest
If you are struggling to find a mugshot, which is a good sign, play around with your searches. Add in key identifiers to further assist Google in helping you find your arrest records. Such information as middle name, initials, nicknames, or arresting location may help to pinpoint mugshots in search results.
90% of adults in the US say that when they Google themselves the results are less than flattering. On top of that, 85% of human resource departments begin their applicant research on Google.
Why? Because it’s free, easy and gives them instant answers. Just like a more formal background check, employers scour the web for details about potential hires. If a person has applied for employment, wouldn’t you want to know something about his or her background? Turning to the web for quick details is not only fast, but it is free — unlike many background check processes. In this way, employers can easily weed out those with arrest records or unflattering mugshots posted online. Having your mugshot visible to anyone with an internet connection may result in lost employment opportunities for you.
If you are curious about what websites your mugshot is located on please complete the form below. One of our knowledgeable reputation advisors will contact you within 24 hours.
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How Do I Get My Mugshot Removed From Google?
This is the tricky part about mugshots removal. If you are looking to remove your mugshot online from Google search results, you’ll first need to delete it from the site where it was initially posted.
As previously stated, mugshot sites are owned and operated by normal citizens. There is no rhyme or reason as to why they’ve started the website. However, there are no statutes in place to have these websites shut down at this time unless information is posted to these sites for an unlawful purpose. Mugshots are fair game, according to these websites.
How can mugshots get removed? In many cases, you must resort to their contact us page to look for a viable email or phone number. Contacting the site owner is always the first step when you want to begin the process of removing confidential information.
Or you can utilize a free tool such as ICANN WHOIS in order to view the registrar’s information.
If you do come across their contact information on their website or a forum, it’s best to be polite. These individuals, as horrid as they seem, have no obligation to remove your mugshot. Asking nicely to have your mugshot taken down may work; it doesn’t hurt to try this method of booking photo or mugshot removal before moving on to more time consuming options.
How Much Does It Cost To Remove A Mugshot?
If your criminal record is still public record (has not been expunged/sealed) there is nothing you can do to completely get rid of it online. Arrest records are public records, and many law agencies have a legal obligation to post this information.
More often than not, the owners (if they respond) will charge you a fee if you want to get mugshots removed. Reply to their response by attaching any legal documents you have.
Most sites will remove mugshot information granted you provide a valid expungement document.
Additionally, the online reputation experts at NetReputation offer a mugshot removal analysis, completely free of charge. This is when we browse over 500+ mugshot websites in search of your criminal record.
Your dedicated reputation advisor will email you all of your options for your review.
Finding out your mugshot is online can be devastating. And if you are wondering “Do mugshots ever go away?”, the answer is that unfortunately they don’t. Not by themselves at least.
Net Reputation’s online reputation management services are backed by over a decade of experience when it comes to removing unwanted content online. In addition, our team provides a mugshot takedown service that is hands-down the fastest, most efficient way to erase your name from Google results. Guaranteed!
Search results can be a double-edged sword. That’s why it’s so important that you know your options. This goes even for those without mugshots online as well. The importance of building what we call a “reputational safety net” allows you to remain proactive in case something negative does transpire in your future.
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Removing mugshots from Google is very possible, regardless if you were convicted of the charges or walked out of the sheriff’s office or jail 5 minutes later with the charges dropped. Arrest records are embarrassing, but they don’t have to affect you for the rest of your life. Net Reputation knows that being arrested for a crime can result in personal records or mugshots to appear in online searches, potentially harming your reputation and your chances at success. We can help remove mugshots once and for all by using proven strategies that produce results. In the state of Florida or anywhere you live, your mugshots can be removed from nearly any site that posted them.
NetReputation has a list of over 3,000 websites to remove from. As well as ensuring your photos never appear on those sites again. Ready to get started?
Please take a minute to complete the form below and our team will reach out to you within 24-hours.
Get your fast, proven mugshot removal solution by calling our Removal Team today.