Ending Soon! Save 33% on All Access

You Can Now Remove Medical Records From Google Search Google's removal policy now includes a category called "confidential, personal medical records of private people."

By Tom Brant

This story originally appeared on PCMag

Twin Design | Shutterstock.com

Google will now accept requests to remove personal medical records from its search results, adding to a very short list of types of sensitive personal information that the web search giant will not display.

Google made the change on Thursday, The Guardian reported. The company's removal policy now includes a category called "confidential, personal medical records of private people." There are only four other categories: Social Security or other national identification numbers, bank account and credit card numbers, images of signatures and nude or sexually explicit images.

In addition to personal information, the company also accepts requests to remove images of child sexual abuse and honors copyright takedown requests, including those made under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

The removable categories of personal information is purposely limited, Google says, because its goal is to "organize the world's information and make it universally accessible." Google will not remove dates of birth, addresses or telephone numbers from its search results in most cases, according to the removal policy.

Google's decision to honor removal requests for medical records comes shortly after a top Uber executive obtained the medical records of a customer who had been raped in one of its cars in India. Uber fired the executive, one of a string of high-profile incidents that has caused turmoil at the company and ultimately resulted in the departure of its CEO, Travis Kalanick.

Medical records are routinely vulnerable to hacking, and while not all hacks result in the information being posted to the internet, leaked records are not only a breach of privacy but they also pose identity theft and safety concerns, since they often include names, dates of birth and home addresses.

The latest major medical records hack in the U.S. occurred last month, when 7,000 records from the Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center in New York were exposed.

Tom Brant

News reporter

Tom is PCMag's San Francisco-based news reporter. 

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Business Models

How to Become an AI-Centric Business (and Why It's Crucial for Long-Term Success)

Learn the essential steps to integrate AI at the core of your operations and stay competitive in an ever-evolving landscape.

Business Ideas

63 Small Business Ideas to Start in 2024

We put together a list of the best, most profitable small business ideas for entrepreneurs to pursue in 2024.

Cryptocurrency / Blockchain

Bored and Hungry, the fast food restaurant that uses NFT's from the Bored Ape Yacht Collection for its image

The most famous apes of the digital world are very present in a fast food place in California.

Business News

'Creators Left So Much Money on the Table': Kickstarter's CEO Reveals the Story Behind the Company's Biggest Changes in 15 Years

In an interview with Entrepreneur, Kickstarter CEO Everette Taylor explains the decision-making behind the changes, how he approaches leading Kickstarter, and his advice for future CEOs.