How to remove images from "Google Search"

Images are shown in Google Search because they were either

  • once shared as a "Public" album in Picasa Web Albums, or

  • there are links on public websites to a "Private, anyone with the link" album

So the first step in removing your image from Google Search is to change the album privacy to any level except "Public" or to "Private" if links were posted to a public website. Note: this option no longer exists since Picasa Web Albums is disabled. You can delete the album in Google Photos (make a new one first if you want to keep it).

You'll notice that the images won't disappear from "Google Search" instantly. Like any search engine, "Google Search" crawls around the entire internet with a frequency rate of every few weeks, up to once a month, to make the information up-to-date and to refresh the cache (copy) it keeps of all information. So, normally, it will take till about a month before your images will disappear.

However, if it is important to you to speed up the removal process, there is a procedure to tell Google that there has been an important change, and then they will process these typically the next day. To do this you need to specify the correct URL of each image in the "removal tool."

Procedure to request image removal

Because it is not always easy to get the correct URL to use in the removal tool, follow this procedure to find it:

    • Go to the Google removal tool: and login to your Google account

    • Open a second browser window/tab, and search for your image(s) using "Google Search" / "Images"

    • For each image you want to remove, follow the steps below:

    1. Click on the image thumbnail shown so a larger preview is shown beneath it

    2. Click on "View image"

    1. Select and copy the link in the address bar as shown in the screenshot below

    2. The link should look like this:

      1. Switch to the browser window/tab with the "removal tool"

    1. Paste the link you just found in the text box ("right-click" then "paste" or press CTRL+V)

    2. Press "Request removal"

    3. Switch to the browser window/tab with the search for your images... and go back to step 1

    • About a day later, your image(s) should be removed from Google Search.

Procedure to follow up if the request was successful and if all pictures are gone

It makes sense to have a look every 12 hours or so, to see how things are going.

  1. Go to the Google removal tool:

  2. Log into your Google account

  3. If you still see images in the list with status "Pending," Google isn't ready yet, so wait some more...

  4. If you don't see any images anymore, change the filter so "All" requests are shown

  1. If your requests have status "Removed," everything went fine, and the images will be removed from Google Search. If the requests are denied, check the message and/or double-check if the URL(s) you entered resembled the example above...

  2. Search again in "Google Search" / "image" for your images to see if they are all gone because, if you had a lot of pictures in your albums, possibly Google Search didn't show all your pictures yet... and there might be other images there now.

  3. It is also possible Google Search indexed your pictures in different resolutions... so the same image might be shown again now, but in a lower resolution...


More help with removing images from Google Search:

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