Google removes quarter-million Web links

Google has removed a little more than a quarter of a million Web links from its search results this year, the search giant announced Monday. 

A total of 226,788 website URLs have been removed from its search engine in Europe since May, when a court ruled that some individuals have the right to urge the company remove certain links that include their name. 

Google released a transparency report Monday outlining the number of requests it has received to remove content around the world. In the report, it showed the number of times European Union members have requested information to be removed as part of its new "right to be forgotten" policy put in place by a May court decision. 

Google removes the information from searches if it is found to be "inadequate, irrelevant, no longer relevant, or excessive." It notes that the links are only removed from searches relating to a person's name and can be found by other means.  

Google has evaluated 684,419 URLs from a total of 189,238 requests to remove search results. It has complied with a little more than 40 percent of the requests, nearly identical to the percentage from its first report in October

The largest number of requests came from France, followed by Germany and Great Britain.

Facebook remains the greatest affected website, with 4,789 links removed from the search engine. YouTube ranks fifth.