People Search Gets Spooky With Spokeo

Spokeo is the latest social search info aggregator/people search service--a new offering that the Pandia team has dubbed "the Big Brother of social networking" because of how thorough the engine is. Once a user submits the username and password from one of her e-mail accounts (from AOL, Gmail, Hotmail or Yahoo) Spokeo gets to work digging up all sorts of publicly available info about her contacts.

Available resources include movie rating sites like Flixter, Pandora playlists and Last.fm favorites, photos from Flickr, Twitter posts, StumbleUpon reviews, even Amazon wish lists--and the list goes on and on. And since the info is publicly available, there's no worry about privacy violation. What you may worry about, according to the Pandia team, is how spooky it feels to get all of this info about your contacts in one fell swoop.

"Browsing all the info Spokeo makes available to me feels a lot like spying on my friends. And they don't even know I'm keeping track of them," they said. "Separately, these information nuggets are innocent enough, but together they paint a picture of a person that is more detailed than I personally appreciate. It must be a gold mine for private investigators, stalkers and other unsavory people."

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