How to remove yourself from Google searches

Last Friday I was visiting with the awesome members of the Carmel Teachers Association at the George Fischer Middle School.  They had lots of great questions – and one stumper!

How do I remove myself from an embarassing Google search?  What is someone posts something aobut me and I don’t want others to find it?

I was a bit disturbed by me research!

How can I remove information about myself from Google’s search results?

Like all search engines, Google is a reflection of the content and information publicly available on the web. Search engines do not have the ability to remove content directly from the web, so removing search results from Google or another search engine leaves the underlying content unaffected. If you want to remove something from the web, you should contact the webmaster of the site and ask him or her to make a change. Once the content has been removed and Google’s search engine crawl has visited the page again, the information will no longer appear in Google’s search results. If you have an urgent removal request, you can also visit our help page for more information.

In other words, ask the person who posted it to take it down(Wow – why didn’t I think of that)…

Better news – also from Google @http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=164734

  • Contact the webmaster and work with them to get the problematic content updated or removed.
  • Work with the appropriate legal authorities to get the content removed from the web.
  • Oh wait, same info with a twist – call the police.

    CNET TV – one of my favorite sources for Tech info is CNET.  Check out this video at http://cnettv.cnet.com/remove-personal-information-from-google-search/9742-1_53-50096087.html

    The news for pictures of you (images) is only a little better. 

    If you’re not the webmaster:
    This will prove a bit more difficult as Google doesn’t have the right to censor results based on whoever asks them to. Thankfully, we’re doubtful many of you are major celebrities who have your paparazzi photos popping up all over Google Image search results so this should be a bit easier. What you’ll need to do first is contact the webmaster. Google has provided some helpful hints as to how to go about doing that . Explain to them why you’d like the image taken down and offer a substitute one if they’re using your photo for reasonable purpose like a news article. Once they take the image down you will have to repeat the same final step as before by taking the URL of the image and pasting it in that Content Removal page.

    So there is the no-so-great answer.  It seems the best offense is a good defense – try to make sure nothing bad about you gets posted in the first place.

    About Dave Adkins

    I was born and raised in upstate New York and still live there. I went to Syracuse University for a BS in Telecommunications, but did not quite stick to the standard four year plan. I took a year off and went on the road as a drummer in a top-forty band. After college, I continued to play and also did a tour as the Technical Director for an Ice Show (yes – skaters!). Our biggest show was for President Carter at the White House the Christmas before he left office. After getting married, I worked in a number of technology companies designing, consulting, and implementing computer systems and networks. In 1991 I finished an MBA with a concentration in Information Technology. My wife was in law school, so it was the perfect time to go back to school. After this round of graduate school, we had two kids (now 16 and 18 – boy and girl), and I went to work for New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) in 1993. In the new millennium, my wife got elected as a local judge, I finished a PhD in Information Science and moved up the ladder to become the Director of Information Technology for NYSUT. I am an adjunct professor at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the undergraduate program and have also taught in an evening MBA program. I also have been active lately giving "Cyber Safety" workshops for parents of teens. I enjoy volunteering as a Board member for several local organizations and recently dusted off my drums and started playing again.
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    One Response to How to remove yourself from Google searches

    1. I’ve been studying multitudes of info on this particular subject over the last couple of days, your post has helped me a lot in my project . Thank you for an informative post.

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