A new tool to request deletion of Search results that violate your privacy is coming
Even the most privacy conscious among us are often compelled to set up some sort of online presence, and the second you start sharing your personal details, you face the risk of losing control of that info. Anyone interested in looking someone up likely starts right with Google, and they'll easily find anything the search giant has managed to index. Thankfully, the company's been thinking about steps in can take to protect individual privacy, and is now rolling out a new way to request the removal of Search results containing your personal information.
Chances are, you're not crazy about the idea of people discovering details like your birth date, sexual orientation, or your address through Google Search results — so what can you do about it? While Google has had a request form to remove doxxing content from Search results, that's just one of umpteen support documents, making it rather hard to find. Back during I/O 2022 earlier this year, Google expressed interest in making the tool more accessible through its apps, and now some users are finally seeing the option appear in beta for the Google app on Android.
The "Results about you" tool appears as a selection when you tap your profile icon in the upper right corner on the Google app (spotted here by Telegram user ralph950412), located just under the option to delete the last 15 minutes of your Search history. Tapping the "learn how" button on the page for the new feature explains how you can find results about you and talks you through having them taken down. Options for explaining why results should be removed let you specify whether pages broadcast your personal info, contain your information specifically intending to harm you, include other illegal info, or feature outdated details.
All your requests to remove Search results with your information will be shown in the dashboard under the "Results about you" option when you tap your profile icon in the Google app. There are dedicated tabs for active, approved, and rejected requests, as well.
Right now, this doesn't seem to be widely available, and based on the "dogfood" label you can see at the top of the screen featuring reasons for removal requests, it wouldn't surprise us if Google had accidentally made this tool available before it really intended to go public with it. That said, we may just be in a limited beta for now, and in any case, hopefully a wider release is on the horizon.
If you can't wait for this tool to arrive for you, check out our guide to request the removal of any Search result (with valid reason, obviously).