Google has started rolling out a tool to help you remove your personal information from web search results.
The company announced the tool at Google I/O back in May, promising to make it far easier to control your personal identifiable information online. This personal identifiable information, or PII, may include your phone number, your home address, or your email address, among other things.
Now, as reported by 9to5Google, this tool is starting to roll out to users in the US and Europe via the Google app on Android phones. Open said app and tap on your profile picture, and you might just see a new ‘Results about you’ option. Tapping on this will take you to a page that will run you through issuing a request to Google to remove any search results containing that aforementioned PII.
Also, if you come across some of that sensitive PII whilst browsing in the Google app, you can tap the three-dot button and select ‘Remove result’ to issue a request to take down the offending result.
The Results about you section will then enable you to follow the approval process for all such takedown requests. And it really is a whole process rather than an automated removal system, with Google explaining that it needs to “evaluate all content on the web page” to ensure that it’s “not limiting the availability of other information that is broadly useful, for instance in news articles” before it can decide to approve the result removal.
If you can’t see this new tool on your own Google app, it’s possible to get a head-start on the result removal process by jumping to this page.