Reddit is the online community’s treasure trove of information, especially during ongoing and breaking news events. However, when your brain has had just about enough and needs a break from Reddit, deactivating your account is a wise yet temporary solution.
If you feel like that’s the best thing for you, read on to find out how to delete Reddit account (permanently). Additionally, the privacy and security issues on the popular website.
Reddit and Security Issues
Reddit has always had its fair share of controversies. Going back to 2016, shortly after the election of Donald Trump as President, Steve Huffman, the CEO of Reddit found r/The_Donald, a prevalent pro-Trump subreddit, and discovered that multiple of the most critical comments were regarding Huffman himself, in response to a conspiracy related to a Hilary Clinton subreddit.
What redditors didn’t know was that Huffman had the power to edit any part of the website and enter codes that would change his username to that of the critic, basically reversing the stream of insults. It didn’t take long for the users of the website to realize this and they were seriously upset with how the data was vulnerable to manipulation.
Huffman doesn’t hold this power anymore, but this incident was a mere indicator of the over-involvement of Reddit’s tech execs, and perhaps more.
Over the years, many other weaknesses of the site have been exposed, including one celebrity private image hack, questionable content moderators, and an event that suggest Reddit may have been having personal data of the users to the government – the removal of “warrant canary” of 2016.
2018 marked another year of Reddit being annoyingly sneaky as they reestablished the tracking of every user and openly sold this data to third parties.
By default, tracking is enable on Reddit which is used for personalization and advertising purposes, which users can choose to opt out of – manually. But, if the users aren’t in the knowing about this default tracking, chances are, they will not opt out of it.
Just be careful that from the cleanest possible separation from Reddit, you need to individually delete your comments and posts.
Deactivating vs Deleting: Everything to Know
Reddit users can’t disable their account on a temporary basis. Once the account has been deleted, it’s completely wiped from their database, along with all your beloved links. Your comments will show appear on various parts of the site if they’re not individually deleted before the account is deactivated, but the author of the comment will be shown as [deleted]. By using a Google Chrome extension, Nuke Reddit History extension, you can do this for all your posts together, but there’s no in-built method for this just yet.
The process can’t be reverses, so make sure you’re 100 percent sure about wanting to delete your Reddit account. If you change your mind later, it will be too late!
Step by Step Guide: How to Delete Reddit Acount
So, you’ve totally sure that you wish to wipe your Reddit account from the server forever. You can do this from their website. Unfortunately, Reddit doesn’t allow you to delete accounts from the mobile app, or by using any other third-party apps.
First of all, you will need to log in to the account you want to delete. Some people use multiple accounts. In this case, double check to ensure you’ve logged into the right account. Don’t end up deleting the one you wanted to keep!
There’s a “Log In” button on the upper right corner of the website. Click on it.
Once signed in, select the account name option on the top-right corner. A drop-down menu will appear. Click on the User Settings option. Once in that section, look for the Account tab. Scroll to the bottom until you come acorss the “Deactivate Account” option.
Simply press on the “Deactivate Account” button to start the deletion process.
Reddit will give you a warning that deleting your account won’t wipe out the comment and post history in the pop-up Feed Settings menu.
To confirm the deletion, input your Reddit username and password in the boxes of the same name and check off the “I understand that deactivated accounts are not recoverable” checkbox.
They ask you to leave a feedback comment, but it’s completely up to you whether or not you prefer to further explain why you’re leaving the platform. Once all that is done, click the “Deactivate” button.
Press “Deactivate” once more to confirm your choice.
At this point, your Reddit account has been deleted forever. As stated before, this is an irreversible process, so there’s absolutely no scope of restoring it once you’ve done this.
Suggestions on Keeping Your Data Online Private
In the past few years, there has been an alarming rise in privacy policies and protocols scandals revolving around multiple social media platforms. For instance, the Cambridge Amalytica scandal hit Facebook in 2018 and it showed how the latter has shared the data of more than 87 million users inappropriately.
While using geotags, many social media users may forget that they are revealing their exact location. You address is completely given away by now, and if your date of birth is mentioned somewhere on your profile, fraudsters are equipped with adequate information to commit identity theft. The more the information about someone on the web, the bigger the risk.
To keep your data safe from perpetrators, do the following:
- Carefully read the privacy policies of the social media sites you are signing up to, and be extra wary around the ones that share your data with third parties regularly.
- Monitor the privacy settings. Limit what people can see.
- Refrain from granting a social media platform permission to access or post your location. Keep an eye on the privacy settings regularly to make sure no update has bought some suspicious changes.
Don’t be afraid of cutting ties with the website if things get a bit too overwhelming. There are many other online and offline options to replace Reddit, so don’t feel too down!