Google has launched a new service to allow European citizens to request for removal of information about themselves in the search results. This service is the step to comply with an EU ruling affirming “right to be forgotten.” Removals will only happen for EU-versions of Google.
The world’s largest search engine, Google said that it has made a form available through which people could submit their requests. They will assess each individual request and attempt to balance the privacy right of an individual with public’s right to know. You will find the form here. It requires one to select one of European Union Countries and there’s also support for four non-EU countries. These include Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway.
The decision on whether to remove information will take into account whether there is public interest in the information, like information about professional malpractice, criminal convictions and public conduct of government officials.
The form requires submission of a photo ID of the individual or if a third-party is doing the submission for someone else, they need the person’s photo ID as a way to prove they have approval by them. Then there is an option to list one or more URLs which one wants to get removed, and they need to provide an explanation about why they want them dropped.
On successful submission of form
When the form is submitted, it goes into a holding queue and the response that comes out:
Thanks for reaching out to us!
We have received your legal request. We are currently building our system for removing links from our search results according to EU data protection law. In the meantime, your message is in our queue. Once we have our system up and running, we’ll process your request as quickly as our workload permits.
Regards, The Google Team
Information will only disappear from searches made in European countries and queries outside the region will still show contested data.
So, the four things that a user needs to fill out to get the data removed from Google’s index are:
- Name their home country
- Provide links to the relevant material
- Explain why links should be removed
- Provide photo ID
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