Every service site you visit know days requires that you sign up with your phone number or e-mail address in order to make a purchase or access full features. The same applies to apps (both mobile and desktop). When you download it, will ask you to sign in or sign up in order to start using the app.
In other words, its really hard to get any online service without signing up.
What many people fail to ask themselves deeply is; do I really need this product to sign up?
That’s exactly where the ‘real catch’ lies. They use sophisticated English jargons to hide the reason from you -the potential user. Many people take things for granted and blindly gives out their private contact information in exchange for a free service or a free trial if its an app.
So what’s this ‘Hidden Catch’ I am Talking about?
Normally when signing up on a website or an app, you are required to provide your full names, e-mail address or phone number and a password. Some websites may require that you tell them more about yourself depending on the service you are seeking.
I will use ‘dating sites‘ to explain the concept of data processing. Lets say you use your phone number to sign up on a dating site. You also take a real picture of yourself for the profile photo. Finally you add a summary of the kind of person you are looking for.
The service provider decides how they use your data. They may sell your phone number, profile photo to other sister dating sites for use in creating dummy accounts. Now, the buyer of your data will use your information as they wish.
Also, the provider may say that they are going to access your chats while you use their dating app. The data is then used to market the product. At the end you become the product.
NOTE: The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect on May 25, 2018. It governs how personal data of individuals in the EU may be processed and transferred. GDPR is a comprehensive privacy legislation that applies across sectors and to companies of all sizes.
This is the same question you should be asking yourself before you click on the ‘accept terms and conditions and sign up‘ button.
Do You Really Have to Sign Up ..
If you really need to use a service, create a different e-mail for signing up on products that you don’t wish to read their terms of service. This way, you will be safe from spam and privacy infringement.
I don’t recommend signing up with your phone number to services you haven’t read their terms. You may end up being spammed to a point of completely switching off your phone. Spam is that murky.
What Happens When You Sign Up to Every Product or Service With Your Actual Contacts?
Apart from spam, you become a main target to marketers. You phone and mobile number will be shared by marketers within the affiliate market space. We live in a small world. Most of the affiliate marketers know each another. They buy and sell e-mail addresses within themselves for as high as $1 each.
Imagine if someone has 10,000 e-mails; that is $10k per sale. That’s good money right? All one have to do is to create a free product with flaws and target users to sign up. Most even get up to 100k sign ups in a few months.
And you accept:-). How naïve are you?
Ask Yourself …
if I Have to Sign Up, is this a Product I intend to Use in Long Term?
Pareto principal summarizes this. 20% of input (effort) gives you 80% outcome (results). And 80% of input (effort) gives 20% output (results).
In short, focus on those things that brings you results. Only sign up if you are going to use the product or service. If possible sign up for a paid version to seal your commitment.
Otherwise, signing up to try without actually using a product is nothing but a waste of your time. Moreover, its like throwing away your private information to ‘dogs.’ Be realistic.
Go through the marketing e-mails on your inbox. One by one, start by logging into site(s)/app(s) and close all the accounts linked to your e-mail. You have a right to do this. I am talking about the apps and websites you signed up in and have never used the service.
This is the most important step in protecting your private data.
If you are subscribed to a free training that promised to share with you a ‘secret trick‘ to succeeding online only to end up upselling you, unsubscribe. You cannot keep sucking in their ‘salesy information‘ aimed at manipulating how you think.
Isn’t that same as witchcraft that people say it exists?
When you are done, you will start experiencing another level of creativity. You have all that you need within you to succeed.
You will be more focused on your own agenda and not other peoples agenda.
And that’s it from me. Until next time, bye bye and take care.
Follow me on twitter @cheptiony