Google URL Removal Tool Now With Less Requirements

May 19, 2011 • 8:13 am | comments (4) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Google WebmasterGoogle announced they have removed the requirement to first block the URL from GoogleBot prior to requesting a URL removal within Google Webmaster Tools.

Google enabled removing URLs from within Google Webmaster Tools in April 2007. But there was always a requirement, an added layer of security and verification, before Google would remove the URL you had to block the URL so Google knew it was a valid request. Google announced this week that they no longer are requiring that step because you have already verified ownership of the domain name within Google Webmaster Tools.

Google said:

Because you've already verified ownership of the site, we can eliminate this requirement to make it easier for you, as the site owner, to remove unwanted pages (e.g. pages accidentally made public) from Google's search results.

You should still know that these removal requests are only temporary 90 day removals. If you want the URL to never show up, block the URL via 404 or 410 HTTP status code, a robots.txt file or a noindex meta tag.

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As the WebmasterWorld thread points out, this is just another reason to be extremely careful who you give your Google Webmaster Tools password to or who you grant access to.

Another reason to be careful who gets webmaster tools access. A disgruntled ex-employee with access can do a lot of damage to a site. Re-target the site to a small island nation, or now remove key pages from the index.

There is a lot of damage that can be done if you aren't careful with this. I do think Google is doing the right thing by removing the additional restriction, they shouldn't have to baby webmasters.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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