Nowadays, virtually all real estate searches begin online. In particular, these searches begin on mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. While there are some very popular real estate apps that you likely have heard of or may even have on your device, it is what you don’t know about these apps that may be concerning. In particular, your private information may be at risk. We describe below.
Real estate apps and your private information
In today’s digital age, it’s no secret that our personal information is being collected and sold by a variety of companies. With this said, real estate apps are no exception. When you use a real estate app, you’re providing them with a wealth of information about yourself, including your name, email address, phone number, location, browsing history, and even your search criteria. This information is then used to create a detailed profile of you, which can be sold to third-party companies. These third-party companies can then use your information to target you with advertising, send you spam emails, or even sell your information to other companies. For example, if you’ve been searching for homes in a particular neighborhood, you may start seeing ads for real estate agents in that area. Or, if you’ve been looking for homes with a certain number of bedrooms and bathrooms, you may start receiving emails from home builders promoting their new developments.
In some cases, real estate apps may even sell your information to data brokers. Data brokers are companies that collect and sell personal information about consumers. They then use this information to create marketing profiles, which can be used by businesses to target consumers with advertising.
Tips for protecting your information with real estate apps
If you’re not comfortable with the way a real estate app is using your information, you can always choose to not use the app. Or, you can opt out of having your information shared with third-party companies.
Here are some tips for protecting your privacy when using real estate apps:
- Opt out of having your information shared with third-party companies.
- Be careful about the information you provide to real estate apps.
- Use a fake email address or phone number when creating an account with a real estate app.
- Clear your browsing history and cookies after using a real estate app.
Although many people do not realize it, your private contact information is valuable information for many companies and is oftentimes packaged and sold to third-party companies. For this reason, it is important to be knowledgeable about how your private information is being used by these real estate apps.
If you are in South Florida market, there is no real estate app that is more accurate than the Florida Home Search app. Furthermore, this free app was developed specifically by Live South Florida Realty, Inc.. Therefore, you can feel confident that your contact information is not being shared or sold to third-party companies. It is for these reasons that our clients have shared such positive reviews of this app.