Google is undoubtedly the most used search engine, as well as the point of reference for most users who use a smartphone with an Android operating system or a PC with Windows. Google crawls billions of websites every day looking for information. So unless a piece of information is private, it will find it, no matter where it is. In this way, it may happen that the search engine shows your personal information in its search results. While it may sound funny at first, it gets dangerous when it comes to your home address or phone number. You might be wondering, How do I stop my name from appearing on a Google search or how do I remove my personal information from Google Search?
No worries: we can request to remove your personal information from Google. In this comprehensive guide, we will navigate through the steps necessary to remove your personal information from internet search results.
Google: What Personal Information You Can Remove
Google allows you to request the removal of certain types of information that might be showing up in its search results. It is a necessary step in protecting your personal privacy online. Here’s the kind of information that you can have Google remove:
Sensitive Personal Information: You can request Google to remove sensitive personal information, such as
- credit card data;
- health information;
- your signature;
- images of your identity documents;
- physical address;
- email accounts;
- telephone number;
- Confidential login credentials.
Explicit Content Shared without Consent: If you’ve been a victim of revenge porn, where explicit photos or videos of you were shared without your consent, Google can help in removing these.
Personal Information Endangering an Individual: If your personal information or a link to such information is putting you at risk of physical harm or identity theft, then Google may intervene to take it down.
Outdated Information: In certain regions, like the European Union, the ‘Right to be Forgotten’ allows you to request the removal of outdated information that might be harmful to your reputation.
Deceased Person’s Information: If you’re an immediate family member or a legal representative, you can request the removal of a deceased person’s information from Google’s search results.
If you find any of this information about yourself in Google search results, you can request to remove your personal information on Google. However, it’s necessary to understand that not all personal information can be removed from Google’s search results. Information that is publicly available or is of public interest, such as a public figure’s professional contact information, typically isn’t eligible for removal.
How do I remove my personal information from Google Internet searches?
For requesting to remove personal information from Google, you’ll need to follow these steps:
Identify the Information:
Start by finding the personal information about yourself that you want to remove from Google search results. Make sure it’s something that Google will remove. They typically handle sensitive personal information, explicit content shared without your consent, and other similar categories.
Find the Source:
Google pulls information from websites all over the internet. So, it’s necessary to identify the original source of the content or information. Once you’ve found the information on Google, click the link to be taken to the website where it’s hosted.
Contact the Website’s Owner:
Before Google will remove information from search results, it usually needs to be removed from the website. This is the website where it was originally posted. You can often find contact information for the website owner in the ‘Contact Us’ or “About Us” section of their website. Reach out to them, and ask that they remove your personal information from Google searches.
Submit a Legal Request to Google:
If the website owner doesn’t respond or refuses to remove the information. Then you can submit a legal removal request to Google. To find the legal request form type “Submit a legal request to Google” into a search engine. Now you need to select the appropriate result. Furthermore, you have to follow the prompts to submit your request.
Wait for Google’s Response:
Google manually reviews each removal request, so it can take some time for them to process yours. And then, they’ll contact you to let you know whether or not they’ve approved your request.
You can track the progress of your deletion request directly on your Google account in the “Results that apply to you” tab. It allows you to monitor how your request is being processed. Remember, it’s essential to maintain control over your digital presence and personal information in today’s interconnected world.
When you request the deletion of your personal information from Google, you’re essentially asking for the data to be excluded from Google’s search results. However, it’s crucial to understand that this action doesn’t erase the information from the internet entirely.
In simpler terms, Google operates much like an enormous digital directory, indexing the vast expanses of the web and making this content accessible through search results. When Google accepts a removal request, it is choosing to no longer display specific data in its search results but the information itself still exists on the original website where it was posted.
So, if you want to ensure the comprehensive removal of certain personal information from the web, you must directly contact the administrators of the website that hosts this data. After requesting them to take down your personal information, you should follow up to ensure the action has been completed.
In cases where personal data appears on social media platforms, the responsibility usually falls on you to delete or adjust the privacy settings of these posts. Most social media platforms provide settings that let you control who can see your information or how public it is, allowing you to protect your data effectively.
In a nutshell, while Google can help hide your personal information from casual web surfers or prying eyes, the ultimate power to manage your online presence and privacy lies in your hands. Remember, removing information from Google search results is just one step in a broader process of online data management and privacy protection.
Can you remove yourself from public records?
Absolutely, you can request the removal of certain personal information from Google. While Google doesn’t remove all types of content, it typically considers requests to remove sensitive personal information such as national identification numbers, bank account details, credit card numbers, images of signatures, explicit content shared without consent, and certain confidential contact information.
What companies can remove your information from the internet?
Several companies offer services to help individuals remove their personal information from the internet. They work by contacting data brokers and website administrators on your behalf to request the removal of your information. Some of these companies include DeleteMe, Reputation Defender, and PrivacyDuck. These companies, however, can’t guarantee the complete removal of all your information from the internet as some websites may refuse to comply, and certain information, especially in public records, may be impossible to remove completely.
Is it possible to completely remove something from the internet?
Completely removing something from the internet is extremely challenging and, in many cases, may not be possible. It is due to the nature of the internet, where information can be copied, shared, and stored in multiple places. Even if the original content is removed, copies or cached versions can still exist. Furthermore, certain types of information, like public records or news articles, are intentionally designed to be publicly accessible and permanent. While you can take steps to reduce the visibility of information online, such as requesting removal from search engine results or directly from websites, complete removal is rarely guaranteed.