Mike Timmermann, Clark.com
If you’ve ever conducted a Google search using your name, you may have been surprised by the results.
Your date of birth, address and telephone number are just a few of the things that may come up, as well as other information that can be found on official government websites.
Google generally won’t exclude those details from search results, but there are some things it will consider removing.
How to get your sensitive info removed from Google search results
Bloomberg reports that Google recently added “confidential, personal medical records of private people” to the short list of sensitive personal information it may remove.
Here are the other pieces of information Google may wipe from search results:
- Social Security numbers
- Bank account numbers
- Credit card numbers
- Images of signatures
- Nude or sexually explicit images shared without consent
On its website, Google says its removal policy is applied on a case-by-case basis. It will also remove content in response to valid legal requests, like copyright violations.
Here’s how Google explains it:
To decide if a piece of personal information creates significant risks of identity theft, financial fraud, or other specific harms, we ask:
- Is it a government-issued identification number?
- Is it confidential, or is it publicly available information?
- Can it be used for common financial transactions?
- Can it be used to obtain more information about an individual that would result in financial harm or identity theft?
- Is it a personally identifiable nude or sexually explicit photo or video shared without consent?
If you ever discover sensitive personal information about yourself on a Google page, follow this link to request that it be removed from search results.
You should also contact the webmaster directly to have the content deleted entirely.