Right to be forgotten
EU ruling about the "right to be forgotten" has taken effect, with Google now removing search results. Reuters

Google has started to implement Europe's recently introduced "right to be forgotten" law by removing entries from its search results, according to reports.

The Court of Justice of the European Union made the ruling last month, which required the search engine giant to delete "inadequate or no longer relevant data" from its search results when requested by individuals to do so.

The Wall Street Journal first reported that Google had started the process of removal. IBTimes UK has since confirmed this.

"This week, we're starting to take action on the removals requests that we've received," a Google spokesperson said in an emailed statement. "This is a new process for us.

"Each request has to be assessed individually and we're working as quickly as possible to get through the queue. We'll continue to work with data protection authorities and others as we implement this ruling."

Google previously stated that it was "disappointed" by the EU ruling, which was also criticised by free-speech advocates.

"There is a significant, difficult and philosophical question [to be answered] around the balance between privacy and free speech," Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, told IBTimes UK shortly after the court decision. "I think what this decision highlights is that we've got [that balance] all wrong."

Wales is also a member of the advisory board which Google has assembled to look at how it will handle these requests in the future.

For a search result to be removed, the ruling requires that "there's a public interest in the information — for example, information about financial scams, professional malpractice, criminal convictions, or public conduct of government officials."

Thousands of removal requests have already been submitted, as Google streamlined the process by launching a webform.

A new service launched yesterday has sought to make the process even simpler. Forget.me allows users to place requests for the removal of data to then be sent onto the search giant to deal with.