According to Google’s Right to be Forgotten Transparency annual report, EU courts have so far forced the tech giant to take down 2.4 million URLs directing to info on people that want the info gone from the search results. Google admitted that it has so far managed to erase just 43% of the data.
Google’s Right to be Forgotten troubles started in 2014, when the European Court of Justice sided with individuals who want compromising information about themselves to be removed from search results.
On Monday, Google published a comprehensive report on the issue, and highlighted that it has so far received more than 654,000 requests to delist from search queries 2,436,788 URLs. The tech giant was able to remove just 43.3% of the said URLs.
The transparency report also shows who the requesters are (e.g. businessmen who want old convictions gone), the type of data they want to be removed (personal data, convictions), and the sites where that data appears (social media, government page, news etc.). When a delisting occurs, the name of a person, personal information, or crime history won’t be available on a page.
A Handful of Requesters Behind 20% of Delistings
Google underlines in the report that a small fraction of requesters account for a huge chunk of requests. The report shows that 1,000 people or entities or just 0.25% of requesters who contacted Google over a Right to Be Forgotten issue were behind 20% of delistings and 14% of requests.
Most requesters were law firms or agencies worried about their clients’ reputation. Around a half of requesters were from the U.K., France, and Germany. While one third of requesters wanted only one URL to be taken down, 75% wanted up to five URLs to be delisted.
Individual adults are behind 858,852 delistings since January 2016. Around 5.4% of URLs to be taken down concern underage requesters. Celebrities were behind 4.1% of requested delistings. Companies wanted 22,739 URLs gone.
France now pushes for Google to remove the URLs from search results in all countries, not just France if the request was filed in France. That case was sent to the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) last summer and a final ruling has not been yet issued.
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