Under the new ruling concerning the right to erasure, search engines must remove search results when requested.
Last week, a European court ruled that the right to erasure, also known as the right to be forgotten, now includes fake claims about a person, provided that person can prove it. Under the new ruling, search engines must remove search results when requested.
The EU Court of Justice (CJEU) said that users have the right to erase any information from search results if they can prove that the information is false. The ruling comes on the heels of a German case that called for assessing the fine line between the right to freedom of expression and information and the right to erasure.
The German Federal Court of Justice had referred to the CJEU for a legal challenge by two investment managers seeking to delist search results linked to articles criticizing their investment model. The search also comprised image thumbnails of said managers, which the duo argued were taken out of context.
Google declined to comply with the request citing its inability to verify if the information was accurate.
The CJEU’s ruling, derived from its interpretation of GDPR, is that search engines such as Google, Bing, and DuckDuckGo need to delist results if the person can prove that the information is “manifestly inaccurate.”
See More: Apple Brings End-to-End Encryption to iCloud Backups, Photos, and More
Also, the person requesting delisting or dereferencing from search results wouldn’t require a judicial ruling, and organizations would have to comply with “evidence that can reasonably be required” that proves the information false.
“Where the person who has made a request for de-referencing submits relevant and sufficient evidence capable of substantiating his or her request and of establishing the manifest inaccuracy of the information found in the referenced content, the operator of the search engine is required to accede to that request,” the CJEU’s ruling reads.
The right to erasure is not absolute and applies in certain circumstances, including the search engine processing personal data unlawfully, using it for marketing, having the data despite its purpose having lapsed, and more.
“We welcome the decision, and we will now study the text of the CJEU’s decision,” a Google spokesperson told Politico. “The links and thumbnails in question are not available via the web search and image search anymore; the content at issue has been offline for a long time.”
Let us know if you enjoyed reading this news on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. We would love to hear from you!
Image source: Shutterstock
Asst. Editor, Spiceworks Ziff Davis