Google Deleted Only 43 Percent Of 2.4 Million 'Right To Be Forgotten' Requests

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Google has been complying with the Right to be Forgotten ruling in Europe since 2014. An expanded transparency report revealed that the company has only deleted 43 percent of the 2.4 million URLs requested to be taken down.  ( Patricia De Melo Moreira| AFP/Getty Images )

In an updated Right to be Forgotten Transparency report, Google revealed that out of the 2.4 million URLs requested to be taken down under the program, it has only deleted 43 percent.

Google published an infographic on the current statistics of the Right to be Forgotten ruling, revealing a few interesting tidbits about the program.

The Right To Be Forgotten Ruling In Europe

Google has been complying with the Right to be Forgotten ruling since the European Court of Justice passed it into law in 2014. The Right to be Forgotten ruling allows people to ask Google to remove search results that involve their names and personal details.

Simply requesting for the information to be delisted from search results, however, does not guarantee a deletion. Google considers if the information in question is "inaccurate, inadequate, irrelevant or excessive" and if there is public interest for the information to stay online.

To show how it has handled the Right to be Forgotten requests that it has received, Google published an updated Right to be Forgotten Transparency report with an expanded scope.

Google Deleted Only 43 Percent Of Right To Be Forgotten Requests

In an infographic released by Google, it revealed that it has received requests to take down about 2.4 million URLs from its search results from 2014 to 2017, but it has only delisted 43 percent of them. Apparently, not much has changed from Google's Right To be Forgotten statistics from a few years ago.

According to Google, this is because of the possibility of alternate solutions, technical reasons, and duplicate requests. Determining if the requested information to be deleted is of public interest also comes into play, though the issue is more complex and takes into account several different factors.

The most requested type of information to be delisted was professional information at 24 percent, and the top types of websites where the information is hosted are directories at 19 percent, personal information at 7 percent, and news articles at 18 percent.

Google also revealed that 89 percent of requests come from private individuals, while 11 percent come from a combination of minors, corporate entities, politicians, and celebrities.

Google also drew attention to a small group of requesters, consisting mostly of law firms and reputation management agencies, that account for a disproportioned bulk of the requests. The top 1,000 requesters, which is just 0.25 percent of the total number, have filed 14.5 percent of the requests and 20.8 percent of the URLs for delisting.

Google In Legal Battle Over Right To be Forgotten

Google, meanwhile, currently finds itself in a legal battle with France.

The current form of the Right to be Forgotten ruling only requires Google to delist URLs from the European versions of its search engines. France, however, argues that the delisting should apply to all of Google's search engines worldwide.

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