May 22, 2018
Google has been accused of letting users look up the identity of rape victims.
Searching online for details about attackers in prominent cases can return the names of their victims or accusers.
The identities of vulnerable defendants who have been granted anonymity by a court may also be revealed.
The problem is caused by Google’s ‘related search’ and ‘autocomplete’ function. It will suggest the names of victims because it has logged popular searches for information around those names.
Maria Miller, who is chairman of the Commons women and equalities commission, told The Times: ‘Google has to operate within the law of the UK – if that means they have to change how their search engine operates, then so be it.’
Labour MP Jess Phillips said the technology was turning rape and abuse victims into ‘click-bait’ and a rape charity said that fear of exposure could stop victims coming forward. Fay Maxted of the Survivors Trust said it was ‘beyond shocking that Google is facilitating access to the names of victims’.
This article was posted: Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 7:38 am