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Google Search Allows Users To Request For Images Of Minors To Be Removed From Images Results

Google sheds light on its online safety feature via which images of individuals that are under 18 can be requested for removal from Google Images’ search results.

The population of the internet extends over billions of users, and hundreds of different platforms. There’s near-unlimited access to information, and just about any two people can interact with each other, provided a tiny bit of effort is put into place. While what has been described may definitely sound like a paradise to the likes of extroverts, academics, and people who are curious and inquisitive by nature, such features also attract a different, less enjoyable crowd. It’s a crowd that almost everyone has encountered, especially women online. Yes, I am referring to the perverts and creeps. While real life has certain laws and regulations in place to keep such individuals in check (some more successful than others, as any victim of harassment could vouch), the internet isn’t such a place. Forums are free to sign up for, and sources of information such as Google are very, very accessible.

Google perhaps is one of the more worrying examples of accessible information. The right keywords can get individuals access to online profiles, Facebook accounts, Instagram and TikTok IDs, and so on. The company’s search engine is one of the best and most thorough on the marketplace right now, but in such cases, this acts as a disadvantage. What’s more worrying is that images from such platforms are often found on Google Images, putting underage users at risk. Social media platforms have introduced security measures to help improve the overall situation, such as Facebook’s locked profile pictures display, but identity can still be gleaned from them. The best solution is removal.

Google seems to have come to the same conclusion, as the company introduces this new feature of theirs. The safety feature was announced back in August, 2021, and has now been fully implemented. Via a link provided on Google’s blog, minors or individuals acting on their behalf, i.e. parents and guardians, can fill out a form with the relevant details. A URL of the image must be attached as well, following which a team at the company will review it. Shortly after, the image will be removed. The team will notify the relevant user once the image has been taken down, or if they require additional information.

The internet isn’t really the safest of places, due to just how vast and ungoverned it is. There aren’t any sex offender registries present, no badges to differentiate the creeps from the civilized. All one can do is stay safe, and always keep a friend close if help is needed.


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