Breaking News Bar
posted: 7/4/2014 6:56 AM

Google begins removing user data under 'right to be forgotten'

hello
Success - Article sent! close
  • The Internet may never truly forget, but Google is starting to. The tech giant began filtering out results for some users under Europe's new "right to be forgotten."

      The Internet may never truly forget, but Google is starting to. The tech giant began filtering out results for some users under Europe's new "right to be forgotten."
    Bloomberg News

 
The Washington Post

The Internet may never truly forget, but Google is starting to. The tech giant began filtering out results for some users under Europe's new "right to be forgotten."

The action comes in response to the ruling in May by the European Union's top court that individuals have the right to request the removal of embarrassing Internet search results tied to their names.

Order Reprint Print Article
 
Interested in reusing this article?
Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.
The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.
Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.

Contact information ( * required )

Success - request sent close

"This week, we're starting to take action on the removals requests that we've received," a Google company statement said. "This is a new process for us," the company said, noting that each request must be individually processed.

The company declined to comment on the number of removal requests it has received so far or how many have been processed. It started accepting requests via a webform shortly after the initial ruling.

According to an FAQ posted on the French version of Google, the company will consider whether results "include outdated information about your private life" and whether there's a public interest in the information remaining in search results -- for example, if it relates to financial scams, professional malpractice, criminal convictions or the public conduct of a government official.

"These are difficult judgements and as a private organization, we may not be in a good position to decide on your case," the FAQ says, acknowledging that the ruling has put Google in the uncomfortable position of making what are essentially censorship decisions.

Some earlier reports suggested Google might display a notice letting users of the search engine know whether results have been modified due to the "right to be forgotten." Instead, the company is using a blanket notice on searches for names on its European sites.

"When you search for a name, you may see a notice that says that results may have been modified in accordance with data protection law in Europe," the FAQ reads. "We're showing this notice in Europe when a user searches for most names, not just pages that have been affected by a removal."

Share this page
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.
    help here