These countries ask Google to remove the most content


Every year, governments around the world ask Google to remove content from its many platforms on the web. The reasons are many, ranging from national security and libel to copyright and fraud. But which countries make the most requests?

According to Surfshark, Russia has submitted 123,606 requests over the past decade – 31,384 in 2020 alone – making it by far the largest requester for content removal. The most common reasons given fall into the categories of national security and copyright.

All other countries are pale compared to Russia, Turkey, second with just 14,231 applications, and India, third, with 9,899 applications. South Korea made things interesting in 2020 with the second highest number of applications that year, nearly doubling its 10-year total.

It may or may not surprise you to learn that the United States is the fourth most frequent requester for content takings, with 9,627 requests in the past 10 years. Just over 60% of US claims are for defamation. It’s also worth noting that the 5.3% for trademarked is actually the highest of any country, and the 7.32% for online harassment comes in second.

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If you are worried that the United States is going in the wrong direction in terms of internet freedom, take comfort in knowing that the country has become lighter in recent years. Claims involving fraud increased between 2016 and 2018 and the total number of claims has declined since. The United States only made a total of 596 requests in 2020, so it doesn’t look like our government is looking to censor anyone.

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