Apr 6, 2019

Axios AM

🏀 Good Saturday morning ... Final Four tip times, tonight in Minneapolis:

  • U.Va. vs. Auburn, 6:09 p.m EST.
  • Michigan State vs. Texas Tech, 8:49 p.m EST.
1 big thing: What the internet knows about you

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

We asked Gerald Rich, Axios senior developer of news products, to write this after he gave an eye-opening presentation ("Dox and Lox") over bagels at a recent staff retreat:

Any search engine can quickly reveal your phone number, address and family information with a surprising level of detail.

  • It can be instantly culled on the open web from sites like White Pages and Spokeo.

Why it matters: This information, combined with social media posts, can be used by anyone to intimidate, harass, or stalk high-visibility people like politicians, business leaders, celebrities and journalists.

  • And it's getting easier for trolls to find specific information about all of us as we go about our daily lives.

Here’s how to reduce your online footprint:

  • Go to one of the lists of people aggregator sites, like the one provided by IntelTechniques, and go through the opt-out steps.
  • Don't provide any additional, optional, or new information like a driver's license or phone number, and consider making a burner email just to receive opt-out confirmations.
  • Opting out of all of them is harder than unsubscribing from an email. So aim for reducing the amount of information available, rather than attempting to go completely off the grid.

What else you can do:

  • IntelTechnique’s full list of people finder sites with associated opt-out steps.
  • The New York Times information security team has a tip sheet, including links to some of the largest people finder sites that regularly appear in search results.
  • The Privacy Rights Clearinghouse also provides a consumer guide detailing the specifics of government records and public versus private information.

The bottom line: These sites don’t necessarily delete your records from their database if you opt out. But they can make you a more difficult target for people to quickly pinpoint.

Share this story.

2. Trump struggles with growing problem on border
This aerial view shows people standing on the Mexican side of the border yesterday in Tijuana, with the border barrier at right. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)

President Trump, during a visit yesterday to the southern border in Calexico, Calif.:

  • "It's a colossal surge and it's overwhelming our immigration system, and we can't let that happen. So, as I say, and this is our new statement: The system is full. Can't take you anymore. ... Our country is full."

Chaser ... Selvin Alvarado, a 29-year-old father, told the N.Y. Times he exposed corruption in his hometown in Honduras — then fled into Mexico, followed by an armed group, in an attempt to win asylum in the United States:

  • "I prefer 1,000 times being jailed than being dead."
3. 2020 Dems urgently court black voters
Joe Biden was joined onstage by children as he spoke yesterday at an International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers conference in Washington. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP)

In the initial phase of the Dems' 2020 race, "two straight white men [Sanders and O"Rourke] have emerged as the fastest fundraisers, and another [Biden] has jumped to a lead in recent polls, before even announcing his candidacy," the WashPost's Sean Sullivan and Dave Weigel write:

  • Their rise "in a field with historic diversity has caused dismay among some Democrats, particularly African Americans and women hoping for a mold-breaking nominee."

What's new: "That has led the current white male candidates ... to seek out black voters with some urgency," per The Post.

  • "They are opening the door to reparations, speaking openly about the legacy of slavery and offering blunt talk on racial injustice."

Why it matters: "Black voters, particularly black women, have the potential to play a decisive role in the Democratic Party’s attempt to defeat President Trump."

4. In-box du jour
Courtesy an Axios reader

President Trump said this week that he plans to nominate Herman Cain, a former Republican presidential candidate, to the Federal Reserve board.

  • Here are emails you received over the past month if you're on Cain's list.
5. Battle for the last unconquered screen

"The auto industry and Silicon Valley are locked in a battle for control of one of the last unconquered screens: your car dashboard display," The Wall Street Journal's Tim Higgins and William Boston write (subscription).

  • Why it matters: "At stake are billions of dollars in revenue from ads and services as well as the balance of power between two big industries."
  • "And then there is the future of the dash itself, a source of endless complaints from drivers frustrated by its glitchy concoction of buttons and technologies."

What's coming: "On future screens, local restaurants, doctors' offices and other services could target ads based on typical driving routes. An insurance company could offer lower rates for cautious drivers, while car makers could use system data to offer service on an aging part before it blows."

  • "Some envision a world where users could start watching a TV show at home, then with a voice command continue watching the same program in the car. Others are working on allowing users to order and pay for gasoline and coffee on their screens."
6. 1 hoop thing

"Auburn University and the University of Virginia, who meet in the Final Four ... this weekend, have two more things in common," the WSJ reports.

  • "The first is their school colors: orange and blue."
  • "The second is how they came to wear those colors: through petty theft."

For U.Va., it dates to the 1880s, when the old silver grey and cardinal reds couldn't hold up to football and mud.

  • "Allen Potts ... the Zion Williamson of the 19th century ... was the unwitting inspiration for today’s basketball team because of one sport he didn’t play."
  • "Potts was at Oxford University ... when he ... became familiar with the English rowing tradition of trading scarfs after regattas. Historians believe that is how he came to own a scarf from the Grosvenor Rowing Club. It was blue and orange."

For Auburn, it reportedly came less than a decade later:

  • "George Petrie ... graduated from Virginia in 1887 and taught at Auburn for one year before leaving to pursue a doctorate at Johns Hopkins University, where he studied under a professor who happened to be obsessed with football. His name was Woodrow Wilson.
  • "Mr. Petrie returned to Auburn and started a football team there. Yet in 1892, as his team was getting ready to play the Georgia Goats, Auburn didn’t even have colors."
  • "Mr. Petrie was busy trying to solve that problem. He knew where to find the solution: his own alma mater."

Between the lines: "There was one more group that went more than 100 years without knowing its place in history: the Grosvenor Rowing Club."