It's not what other people think of you that matters. It's what they can find out about you on the web that will affect your ability to get a job or promotion, rent or buy a house, be accepted into the school of your choice, or find the love of your life.

Increasingly, your personal reputation is at the mercy of search engines, blogs, and social networks, none of which themselves have a sterling reputation for accuracy.

Identity theft, libel, defamation, mistaken identity, and youthful indiscretions captured forever, these are just some of the things that can come back to bite you. Fortunately there are five ways to fight back. And it all starts with discovering the depth and breadth of your personal net footprint.

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