Googling oneself may be seen as an act of vanity, or it may be a smart security tactic.
As a web writer, I periodically run such a search on my pen name.
Mostly, I do this because this helps to identify instances of copyright infringement or plagiarism. Whenever I run an internet search on my pseudonym, a host of illegal republications of my various blog posts or online articles seem to crop up in the search results.
This quick-and-easy process can be done with any major search engine: Bing, Yahoo, or another. I just happened to use Google this time.
Once in a while, I’ve Googled my real name and found surprising results.
This can be a helpful way to uncover possible identity theft, as well as a means of finding oneself in the news. Usually, things like family obituaries and real estate transactions show up. Sometimes, one finds a few surprises.
Today, I discovered that a woman in Tennessee, who was recently arrested for Breaking & Entering and Criminal Obstruction, shares my name.
OK, her middle name is different, along with virtually all of her pertinent details.
A doppleganger she is not.
This person, about 20 years younger than I am, stands 4’8” and weighs 185 pounds, according to the information included with her mug shot. She looks nothing like me. And she has apparently skipped bail.
This moniker-sharer seems to have a criminal record and an inmate number from the county jail.
A very sweet young lady I know entered her own name in the search engine bar and found shocking results. Apparently, a porn star in Europe has the same name.
Maybe a pen name wasn’t such a bad idea, after all.
Created by this user with
vintage/public domain artwork