Until then, Google’s policies were more restrictive. The removal of personally identifiable information in searches happened in more extreme cases, such as proven threats, fraud or pornography, for example.
The new policy now allows the request to erase personal information that poses risks of identity theft, such as login credentials for online services.
“When you’re using the internet, it’s important to have control over how your sensitive, personally identifiable information can be found,” says Michelle Chang, global policy leader for research, in a note posted on the company’s blog.
He added: “The internet is always evolving — with information appearing in unexpected places and being used in new ways — so our policies and protections need to evolve as well.”
It is important to remember that Google removes information from its search pages, but does not erase data from the original site. That is, the information can still be accessed if someone enters the page directly or uses some other type of search engine.
To remove the content for good, it is necessary to contact the website’s hosting service and/or the company in question.
How to request removal of content on Google
Go to the Data Removal site on Google support. There you have the complete list of data categories included in the new policies; Scroll to the bottom and click on “Start removal request”; Fill in the initial data requested, checking the checklist on the types of personal information you want to remove from searches from Google; A complete form will be opened to fill in with personal contact information; Then it is the part of pointing out the URLs (addresses of the online pages) that made your data available. Gather as much information as possible and add to the requested attachments; Finally, check the declaration of veracity of the information contained in the form and confirm by clicking “Send”.
What happens after submitting the order?
The user receives an automatic email when submitting the form. During the process, Google receives the removal request and an internal review is initiated.
It will be verified whether the information is part of a public record, on official or governmental websites. Google may request additional information if data is missing.
In the end, if the sites (URLs) do not comply with the company’s operating policies, the problematic pages will be removed from all Google-linked queries or only from search results that include the applicant’s name (or other indicators).
If denied, the user can resubmit the request using additional materials.
*With information from the Reuters agency.