Even if you’ve managed to stop receiving most junk mail, you might notice mail from political campaigns still manages to find its way into your mailbox.
The reason for this is simply that political organizations don’t have to follow the strict regulations imposed on direct mailers. This can make political mail difficult to deal with, but thankfully, with a little effort, it’s possible to also stop political junk mail for good.
Read on to find out how your address ends up on these campaign mailing lists and how to opt out of political mailings permanently.
Why your address ended up on a political mailing list
The more the politicians know about you, the better their chances to persuade you. So, political organizations collect personal information on local voters using various methods, including state voter files, newsletters, donations, other political campaigns, and data brokers.
It’s not just your address, either. Politicians want to know everything about you, from estimated income to credit rating to favorite movies. Though it sounds far-fetched, you’d be shocked to know what politicians can use to try to get your support, and what data brokers know.
So, how do you make sure your personal information doesn’t get into the hands of political organizations so you can stop all the unwanted mail?
How to remove your address from political mailing lists
Since the reasons you receive political mail may vary, there’s no one solution that will make them all stop at once. But to try and permanently remove your address from political mailing lists going forward, take one or all of the actions below.
1. Remove yourself from data brokers
The most effective way to stop receiving political mail for good is by opting out of data-broker databases and preventing your information from being sold to politicians in the first place.
Unfortunately, collecting and selling data is a billion dollar industry, so data brokers don’t make the process easy. To remove yourself from 500+ data-broker sites, you need to opt out of each one individually, or you can sign up with a professional data-removal service like DeleteMe.
This method is totally effective, and it won’t just stop political mail and other junk mail, by the way. It will also protect you from telemarketers and phone scammers, as well as identity theft, and secure your overall digital privacy.
2. Donate to campaigns anonymously
If you want to donate to a political campaign, but don’t want to receive the subsequent mail, a simple and safe solution is to do so anonymously.
This won’t just help stop unwanted mail, anonymous donations also reduce your digital footprint.
3. Verify state and national laws about political data
Voter registration departments are different in every state. In some, you might have the opportunity to opt out of political mailings when registering to vote. In others, you don’t.
Even though the use of contributor information for solicitation is prohibited under the Federal Election Campaign Act, not all states and municipalities have the same laws regarding solicitations from local candidates.
Contact your local or state Board of Elections to find out your rights, and carefully read your voter registration form to see whether or not a mailing opt out is available to you.
4. Register with DMAchoice
Registering with DMAchoice may not cover political mailings, necessarily, but it’s a good measure to stop junk mail in general.
A non-profit organization run by the Data and Marketing Association, DMAchoice allows you to customize mail preferences to manage the type of direct mail you receive. For a nominal fee, you can opt out of entire categories of direct mail, including ads, catalogs, and charity mail.
5. Contact the campaign organization directly
Last but not least, contact any and every political organization individually that’s sending you mail and request they remove you from all solicitation lists. To do so, either call, or send a letter by traditional mail or email using this handy template.
Of course, there’s always the option to visit the campaign office in person if the organization has a location near you. Most organizations will respect your wishes and stop sending you mail.
Choose to protect your digital privacy
Even though you now have a better idea about how to stop political junk mail, it’s important to realize that protecting your information on the Internet is important for other reasons too.
Apart from junk mail, your personal information exposed online can lead to more spam, fraud, but, most importantly, identity theft.
To keep your information safe, read our comprehensive guide on protecting your Internet privacy, or contact DeleteMe to sign up for our service. Our team of privacy experts can identify and scrub personal data from 500+ data-broker sites, and continue to monitor its security.
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