EUROPE: Google Wins Case of Right to be Forgotten.

As published on wicnews.com, Tuesday September 24, 2019.


Google does not have to apply the right to be forgotten globally, the European Court of Justice ruled Tuesday.

The European Court of Justice handed victory to Google in the case, seen as crucial in determining whether EU online regulation should apply beyond Europe’s borders or not.

The US internet giant had argued that the removal of search results required under EU law should not extend to its google.com domain or its other non-EU sites.

The ECJ’s ruling states that Google’s delisting of search results that concerned EU citizens only applies in the bloc’s 28 member states.

“The Court concludes that, currently, there is no obligation under EU law, for a search engine operator who grants a request for de-referencing made by a data subject, as the case may be,… to carry out such a de-referencing on all the versions of its search engine,” the ECJ said in a statement Tuesday.

But it did stress that de-referencing on EU sites must include measures to “seriously discourage” a European internet user being able to get around the “right to be forgotten” by accessing unrestricted results from a search engine on a non-EU domain.

That demands “geo-blocking”, which Google says it already uses effectively in Europe.

Google hailed Tuesday’s decision by the EU court.

“It’s good to see that the court agreed with our arguments,” its lawyer, Peter Fleischer, said in a statement, adding that Google has worked “to strike a sensible balance between people’s rights of access to information and privacy”.

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