Russia Poised To Pass Sweeping Right-To-Be-Forgotten Law

Lawmakers in Russia are just a couple votes away from passing a sweeping “right to be forgotten” law that critics say would be technically impossible to follow while also preventing citizens from accessing important information online.
The European Union already has its own right to be forgotten law that lets citizens submit links to specific web pages and ask that those pages be removed from search results related to the person’s name. The EU’s criteria gives search engines the right to evaluate whether the person making the request is a public figure or private citizen, and whether the information has general public interest.
But, as the New York Times explains, the proposed law in Russia goes a lot further:
At its core, the proposal is similar to one approved by a top European court last year that forced Google to start removing links from search results for individuals’ names, but has two major differences that push the Russian law

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Bing To Encrypt Searches By Default & Referrer Data To Go Not Provided This Summer

Bing announced they will begin encrypting their searches over TLS. So instead of seeing referrals from http://www.bing.com, they will begin coming from https://www.bing.com.
This happens this summer and with the change, Bing will no longer pass query data to webmasters. The [not provided] saga will be expanded from Google to Bing, where marketers won’t be able to know in detail how searchers are finding their sites through the top two leading search engines.
Google began doing this over three years ago and now Bing has made the decision to make the switch.
Duane Forrester from Bing said, “while this change may impact marketers and webmasters, we believe that providing a more secure search experience for our users is important.” He added, “with this change, you will still be able to see Bing as the origin (referrer) of the encrypted traffic, though analytics tools you are using to analyze your traffic generally have their own, proprietary way of including this information

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Demanding More Detail, Legal Group Calls On Google To Disclose RTBF Criteria

At a conference in Berlin Google’s global privacy counsel Peter Fleischer offered a window into Google’s “right to be forgotten” (RTBF) decision-making process:
The requests . . . first go to a large team of lawyers, paralegals and engineers who decide the easy cases . . . Google has dozens of people working on the requests, mostly out of the company’s European headquarters in Dublin, a Google spokesman said . . .
The harder ones get bumped up to the senior Google panel. Like many Google meetings, some participants are in a conference room, while others join remotely through the company’s Hangouts video-chat product, a spokesman said. Sometimes the group calls in outside experts, such as lawyers with particular specialties.
Fleischer added that following the discussion of each case the assembled group votes. It’s important to point out that individuals whose RTBF requests are denied can appeal to their local data protection authorities for recourse. We don’t have any data however on how many of

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Right-To-Be-Forgotten One Year Later: 70 Percent Of Requests Refused

It was roughly one year ago that the “right to be forgotten” (RTBF) was formally established in Europe by the EU Court of Justice in Luxembourg. Since that time Google has received just over 254,000 removal requests across Europe.
According to Reputation VIP, which operates the Forget.me site in Europe, 70 percent of these RTBF requests are now being denied by Google. The average request processing time has also declined from 56 days to 16 over the past year.

According to the company the top four countries in Europe making RTBF requests are the UK, Germany, The Netherlands and France. Invasion of privacy is by far the most-often cited reason behind RTBF requests. The following chart reflects the full hierarchy of removal justifications, according to Reputation VIP.

Even as RTBF request and removal procedures have “stabilized” over the past year there’s still a raging debate about the scope of removals. Politicians and regulators throughout Europe want the removals to apply to Google’s

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