The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has today, ruled in favour in Google, explaining that the company doesn’t need to extend right to be forgotten rules globally. The French Data Protection Authority (CNIL) had tried to impose a €100,000 fine on the firm after it only de-listed pages within the European Union, but the ECJ has now ruled that Google doesn’t need to block pages outside the EU to stay within the law.
Google argued during the case that it had struck a good balance when it comes to right to be forgotten. While those in the EU can benefit from these rules, the firm said it prevents abuse by authoritarian governments that might want to cover up human rights abuses. The firm was supported during the case by the likes of Microsoft, the Wikimedia Foundation, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, and the UK campaign group Article 19.
In a press release, the ECJ said:
“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, following an injunction from a supervisory or judicial authority of a Member State, to carry out such a de-referencing on all the versions of its search engine.
“However, EU law requires a search engine operator to carry out such a de-referencing on the versions of its search engine corresponding to all the Member States and to take sufficiently effective measures to ensure the effective protection of the data subject’s fundamental rights.”
The court issued a second ruling as part of the case too, according to the BBC. It said that links do not automatically have to be wiped from search results just because they contain information about someone’s sex life or a criminal conviction to ensure freedom of information rights, however, these results should fall down the search result listings over time to give the subjected person a bit more privacy.
Via: BBC News