After blocking 1 million apps in 2021 in the name of security, Google has expanded the possibilities to request that certain personal information be excluded from search results. The company itself gave the news through a blog post.
Until now, the ability to remove your personal information from Google search results was almost exclusively about data that would have allowed identity or money theft; from now on you can also ask to remove information that could lead to your home or the phone number, which in any case could be the key to some attempt to break into personal accounts.
The updated list of information that Google can remove now includes government identification numbers, such as U.S. Social Security numbers, bank account and credit card numbers, images of identity documents and handwritten signatures, folders with sensitive data such as medical records, physical addresses, telephone numbers and addresses emails, confidential login credentials, explicit or intimate non-consensual personal images, pornographic deepfakes, or photoshopped images that look like us.
To request the removal of this material Google will need to provide a list of URL addresses that lead to personal data and also the search pages that show these links. Once the request is submitted, Google will consider it by trying to “preserve access to information considered to be of public interest, professionally relevant or of governmental origin”.
If Google agrees to the request, these links will no longer appear in the search engine results or in any case they will not be linked to the name of the person concerned. Which, it must be emphasized, it does not mean that they will disappear from the web: to do this you should contact the webmaster of the site in question asking to remove the data that interest us, and then possibly contact Google to speed up the process of updating the contents removed from the indexed sites.
The measure adopted by the company is certainly more restrictive than in the past e it partly resembles what the European Union has imposed on the right to be forgotten (albeit not entirely) providing the possibility of protecting themselves for a larger slice of the population than has been the case so far.