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Google panel backs ‘removal of links’ from EU websites

BRUSSELS: A panel of experts appointed by Google to advise it on how to implement an EU ruling ordering it to remove links to some personal information from search results has backed the company’s view that links be removed only from websites in the EU.

EU regulators have taken a different view.

Google set up its eight-member panel last year to draw up a report, published on Friday, on how to implement the surprise “right to be forgotten” ruling from the European Court of Justice in May. The conclusion had been expected.

The panel judged that the internet search giant should only remove links to personal information deemed inadequate, irrelevant or no longer relevant from its European Union websites, such as google.de in Germany or google.fr in France.

That puts the Advisory Council at odds with the EU’s data protection regulators. They said Google should remove links worldwide, including from google.com.

“It concludes that removal from nationally directed versions of Google’s search services within the EU is the appropriate means to implement the Ruling at this stage.” the council said in the report.

The panel, which includes a former German justice minister and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, held public hearings across Europe. – Reuters

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