Google's Right To Be Forgotten requests mostly from public

Just five per cent of requests were from criminals, politicians and high-profile public figures

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Google's Right To Be Forgotten request data has been revealed online, showing that instead of criminals, politicians and high-profile public figures filing complaints, the majority of applications were made from the general public.

The Guardian made the discovery that 95 per cent of requests came from everyday citizens who wanted links relating to their private life removed from search results. The data is thought to cover three quarters of all requests, with the remaining 25 per cent unavailable.

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Google has previously refused to release information about the requests, but The Guardian was able to find the information by analysing archived versions of Google's transparency report from the website's source code.

According to the information, almost half of personal requests have been granted, while only 23 per cent of political requests, 22 per cent of public figure requests, 18 per cent of serious crime requests and 17 per cent of child protection requests have been granted. This accounts for less than one per cent of all requests being allowed.

The majority of personal requests were granted in France and the Netherlands, with just under 95 per cent of all requests coming from everyday citizens and 2.7 per cent of serious crime-related requests in the UK allowed.

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"We've always aimed to be as transparent as possible about our right to be forgotten decisions," Google said in a statement.

"The data the Guardian found in our Transparency Report's source code does of course come from Google, but it was part of a test to figure out how we could best categorise requests. We discontinued that test in March because the data was not reliable enough for publication. We are however currently working on ways to improve our transparency reporting."

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