I'm working on a business directory for my city, and seeding it with public information (data that was already available in the web or in physical directories which anyone has access to see).
I know for a fact that this is not illegal; after all, search engines do it all the time. But I'm facing a couple challenges here:
- Tone: Doing it in such a way that it doesn't come off as aggresive or predatory.
- Opt out: Handling when business owners don't want their info to appear in our website. How to provide access for them to modify it while verifying that the request originates from a bona fide representative of the business (and not a competitor who might remove their listing maliciously).
- Opt in: What to do when a business owner wants to register his business (which wasn't on the directory yet)?
What's the common way to do handle this? The last case is the easiest, because the site automatically sends them a secret code which they can use to modify their info in the future. But in the other cases, the best I've come up with is adding a disclaimer like "is this your business?" in which I ask them to contact the site staff.
Should I assume that whoever is sending data/wants their data removed or modified does, indeed, have authorization from the business to do it? Or should I ask for some verification?