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What is dereferencing and why can Yahoo Search results be dereferenced against my full name in Europe or the United Kingdom?

Why can search results be dereferenced in Yahoo Search in Europe or the United Kingdom?

The Court of Justice of the European Union decided that, under certain circumstances, European residents may request that specific URLs be dereferenced from a search engine's results (C-131/12, 13 May 2014). As 11pm of 31 December 2020, similar rights began existing for residents of the UK pursuant to the laws of the United Kingdom.

To qualify, the specific URL must contain personal data about the individual that is inadequate, irrelevant, no longer relevant, or excessive in relation to the purposes for which it was collected or processed, or where compelling legitimate grounds exist for dereferencing a specific URL.

For each request that we receive to dereference a URL, we at Yahoo must balance the individual's right to privacy with considerations of the public's right to information.

In some circumstances, we will be unable to dereference URLs, these are:

  • We are unable to dereference URLs against search terms other than your full name only. Any additional search terms submitted may invalidate the entire request.
  • We are unable to dereference URLs that do not appear in a European or United Kingdom Yahoo search index.

How can I request that Yahoo Search results are dereferenced against my full name in Europe or the United Kingdom?

You can submit a request through our online form if you are a resident of the European Union, a resident of a European Economic Area country, or a resident of the United Kingdom.

Are you a minor?

If you are a minor, please ask your parent or legal guardian to complete the form on your behalf.

Before submitting your request, we recommend that you carefully review the guidance below as this will ensure your request is handled efficiently.

What information do I need to provide when making my request?

Only submit valid URLs that are returned as a result of a search for your full name on the Yahoo search engine in your European or UK region (i.e., We highly recommend that you check URLs are valid before submitting your request. Invalid URLs will not be processed.

Check if a URL is valid

  1. Visit the Yahoo page used in your European country/or UK (i.e.
  2. Carry out a search for your full name only*, as provided on the ID you will be providing to us (see ID requirements below). This will be your Search Term. *If your Search Term includes words other than your full name, as written on the legal identification you provide to us, the URLs submitted will be invalid
  3. Review your search results and click on the relevant search results to visit the web page you are requesting to be dereferenced.
  4. Copy and paste the URLs of the web pages into our online form. We recommend that you copy and paste the URLs into a notepad application or document and have this to hand when completing the online request form.

  Do not edit or change the URLs in any way - Doing so will make them invalid and may result in your request being rejected.

A general request to dereference all information relating to an individual will not be processed (“This URL is in violation of my rights,” or “I am not happy that this image is publicly available”).

You must include a clear explanation of why the URLs are to be dereferenced. Your explanation must include:

(a) your compelling legitimate grounds to make the dereferencing request, and/or
(b) how the specific URL contains personal data about you that is incomplete, inaccurate, no longer relevant or excessive in relation to the purposes for which your information was collected or processed.

Ensure that all fields in the request form are completed and accurate.

Identification requirements

To enable us to process your request, we do need to see adequate identification to verify your identity. This is to prevent fraudulent dereferencing requests and to process and manage your request. You may redact those parts of your ID document not relevant.

When completing our online request form, please ensure a clear, readable copy of a valid, unexpired document such as your passport, driver's licence, or national identity card that verifies your identity and country of residence is included. We recommend that you have an identity document to hand before completing the form.

You are able to upload up to four files, with a size limit of 4 MB each. If you are requesting Search results be dereferenced for a name other than your legal name, we do require documentation verifying this is the name by which you are commonly known. This needs to be included in your submission.

Acting on behalf of someone else?

If you are submitting a request on behalf of another individual, you will need to obtain and provide a declaration made by the individual stating that you are acting on behalf of that all information provided to you is true. We will not be able to process the request without this information.

Are you a webmaster?

If you are a webmaster, you can learn more about how to remove your website from our search index or about ensuring certain sites are not cached.

How will Yahoo EMEA Limited process any information I provide?

Any information that you give to Yahoo EMEA Limited will be processed in accordance with our privacy policy, a copy of which is available online at the following URL:

Our Review Process

When we receive your request, we will complete a review and make a determination as to if your request meets the criteria to dereference the URLs you have submitted. As part of our review and determination, we take into consideration numerous factors such as the nature and complexity of the request.

We aim to reply to all requests within 30 days upon submission. On occasion, if a request is complex or contains a significant number of URLs, it may take us slightly longer to respond; however, we will always tell you in advance if this is the case.

  If we dereference a URL from search results, this will not entirely remove information from the Internet, or even from appearing in results for searches based on queries other than your name - Information may still be available, for example, on the website where it was originally published, as well as on other search engines.

When we dereference a URL we may include a notice to users within our search result pages informing them that some results have been dereferenced pursuant to EU law or the laws of the United Kingdom. We may also notify the operators or webmasters of websites impacted by your request.