In many ways, Google has made a positive impact on the World Wide Web. It has changed the way we view videos through YouTube. It has made search ubiquitous. It has made communication fast and efficient through Gmail. More importantly, it has helped businesses grow their customer base through infinite web exposure (SEO). Google is everywhere and whether we like it or not, its BIG presence cannot be denied.
However, one major problem persists in the search engine marketing world and that is the overexposure of personal information. With a click of a button anyone can get access to your full name, physical address, pictures and personal email address. Such exposure can lead to major risks, including identity theft, cyber stalking, and spamming.
Unfortunately, removing personal information from the internet is not as easy as deactivating your social media accounts. Google is very picky about what it does or does not delete. Before contacting Google or submitting a DMCA request, we encourage you to read this blog thoroughly. It was written by our team of digital marketing experts in Toronto who are knowledgeable about Google policies and ALL removal process.
What Information Will Google Remove | Digital Marketing Agency Tips
You can ask Google to remove your sensitive personal information, like your bank account number, or an image of your handwritten signature, or a nude or sexually explicit image or video of you that’s been shared without your consent, from Google search results. Social Insurance Numbers and Passport Numbers also fall under the category of things that Google will automatically remove for you…if found online. They will not, however, remove things such as telephone numbers, addresses and your date of birth.
Unflattering images and videos that have made their way onto SERPs will only be considered through a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) request. This request should only be made if you feel your copyright rights have been infringed upon. Be mindful that such a request may require a court order if it is rebutted by the infringer. Should you not have a court order and the infringer files a rebuttal, the image/video will be reinstated on SERPs.
Important Reminder: You do not hold copyright if you are featured in the imaged or video. The copyright is held by the person that took the picture/video.
Check out Google’s Removals Policies to learn more about what information Google will and will not remove.
The Limitations to Removing Data from Google SERPs
Many people assume that because an unflattering photo or video is showing up in a Google search, they can just petition to get Google to remove it. Essentially, Google is showing you a list of the data that exists on the internet; it does not have much control over the data itself. The content will still appear on other websites and users may access the information through other means (e.g., social media). In a sense, removing the information from Google is half the battle.
To permanently delete whatever unflattering piece of data showing up in a Google search, you need to go to the original source. This means if you find an unflattering photo or an article defaming you, then you need to have it deleted from the host website, which may be a blog or a news site. This requires talking to the webmaster or site owner. Reaching out to Google for help will not get it done. Once the original webmaster takes it down, Google and other search engines will gradually filter that information out of their search results.
ORM: Building a Positive Presence to Suppress Unwanted Information
Asking a webmaster delete unflattering or unwanted information not always yield the best results. The request almost always is denied or ignored.
One of the most common questions we hear is: What else can I do to get something removed from Google search? To be honest, it is not an easy process to get negative content removed from Google search. There are only a few instances where that is possible and it was outlined in the previous section. In most cases, the best approach is online reputation management. This means suppressing unwanted content by building a strong personal brand presence.
Most consumers will only visit the first few links returned in search results. As you create SEO-focused content, your page rises to the top of the search ranks, while other pages move down. If you can get the negative content pushed to the third or fourth page, it’s likely that consumers won’t even see it.
Suppressing the Bad Links
There are tons of ways to suppress unwanted publicity, all of which are very manageable and can be effective if done properly:
- Setting up new social media profiles and making sure you’re active on all of them.
- Starting a brand/personal blog and posting quality content regularly.
- Publishing multimedia content, such as podcasts, images, and videos.
- Optimizing content you already have on the web with relevant keywords.
- Leaving comments on other influential websites within your industry.
- Become a thought leader by publishing expert advice in authoritative forums. Stay away from link farms!
- Create quality content and link from your content from a variety of authoritative websites that are topically relevant to web pages you’re promoting.
Suppressing negative content is no different from traditional SEO because the new content you create is optimized to appear on Google SERPs. The more types of content you create, and the better the quality it is, the more likely it will be to rank above the negative content.
About iRISEmedia | Digital Marketing Agency – Toronto
iRISEmedia is an award-winning Digital Marketing agency located in Toronto that focuses on helping clients in Canada, the U.S. and globally. We provide a full suite of Digital Marketing services including social media marketing, website design, SEO and SEM, app development, online reputation management and online branding and PR. Our team helps clients manage and grow their online presence and branding to increase their social media presence, qualified web traffic and online leads. For any internet marketing needs or inquiries, please contact us today at 1-855-493-3622 or visit us on our website.