Google is simplifying the process of eliminating your personal data from its Search platform

Google is simplifying the process of eliminating your personal data from its Search platform

Google has introduced several updates to its Search platform to empower users in managing their personal information displayed in search results. Last year, the company launched a tool that allowed people to remove search results containing sensitive details such as phone numbers, home addresses, or emails. Now, Google has enhanced the “results about you” tool to make it more effective.

In the coming days, users will have access to a new dashboard that will notify them when personal information appears in search results. Upon receiving an alert, users can promptly request Google to remove those specific results.

Additionally, earlier this year, Google introduced a Google One feature that scans the dark web for potential data breaches. This “results about you” update appears to operate similarly, proactively identifying search results with personal information and offering assistance in their removal to protect privacy.

To access the tool, users can tap their profile photo in the Google app and select “results about you,” or visit a dedicated webpage set up by the company. Initially available in the United States in English, Google plans to expand the tool to other languages and regions soon.

Furthermore, Google is also updating its system to help users remove explicit photos of themselves. While previously providing the option to request the removal of non-consensual explicit images from search results, the policy now includes consensual imagery as well. If users had previously uploaded explicit content of themselves to a website and no longer wish it to be available, they can now request Google to remove it from search results if it has been published elsewhere without permission (excluding content that is still commercially available).

Although removing explicit content from Google Search results won’t eliminate it entirely from the web, it will make it more challenging for people to find. Users can access the Google help center and search for “request removals” to initiate the process.

Additionally, Google is introducing updates to parental controls and SafeSearch. Starting this month, Google will blur explicit imagery (adult or graphic violent content) by default in search results, with the option to turn off SafeSearch blurring available in settings unless restricted by a school network admin or guardian.

Lastly, accessing parental controls from Search will be made more straightforward. Users can enter queries like “google parental controls” or “google family link” to find an information box explaining how to adjust the settings.