Audiencia Nacional (National High Court) – Roj: SAN 5211/2014 – nº de Recurso: 220/2011 – 29 December 2014
In its ruling dated 29 December 2014, the Audiencia Nacional (National High Court) established the criteria relating to the recognition of the right to be forgotten Directive 95/46/EC, as a result of the Google Spain ruling. The administrative dispute chamber of the Audiencia Nacional (National High Court) thus recognized, in accordance with the said ruling of the Court of Justice, the right to request the removal from the list of results displayed after a search performed using a person’s name, links to web pages published by third parties and containing personal information.
Firstly, the Audiencia Nacional (National High Court) held that the operation of a search engine must be classified as “processing” of personal data and the operator must be held responsible for this processing.
Secondly, when the search using this search engine is performed using the name of an individual, it is likely to significantly affect the fundamental rights to respect for privacy and protection of personal data. For this reason, this search cannot be justified by the economic interest of the operator of such an engine. A balance must be sought between the legitimate interest of internet users in the information and the fundamental rights of the person established in Articles 7 and 8 of the Charter.
Thirdly, the Audiencia noted that the person requesting the removal of the data, must indicate to the Spanish agency for data protection that the search was carried out using his name and the data obtained, and that the processing of personal data was “performed as part of advertising and business activities” of the operator responsible, on the territory of a Member State.
All this information must allow, according to the Audiencia Nacional (National High Court), the particular circumstances of the person concerned to be taken into consideration to find the right balance between the rights and the competing interests involved, in which it is necessary to take into account the importance of the rights of that person and the compliance with the case law established by the Court of justice, so as to prevent the processing performed by the operator responsible from targeting these data.
The full text is available on: Poder Judicial