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Mug shot removal services
Mug shot removal services | rubberball/Getty Images

Mug shot removal services

People who want to leave the past behind may find a previous arrest isn't so easy to shake. Once you've had your mug shot taken by the authorities -- even if the charges are dropped or you're acquitted, the photo will remain as a matter of public record.

Capitalizing on the desire to keep former foibles private, mug shot sites will typically cull booking photos, which are publically available government records, and post them online. Then, through sister sites, they will offer to scrub the Internet of the unwanted photos, in exchange for an often-hefty fee.

After a 2013 New York Times article highlighting the shady business of mug shot removal services, all of the major payment processors -- Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express along with PayPal -- began eliminating mug shot removal companies as customers.

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Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

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