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Google vindicated by EU court opinion on search index

The general advocate of the European Court of Justice Niilo Jaaskinen said that companies operating in the EU must adhere to national data protection legislation, but that did not oblige them to remove personal content produced by others.

"Search engine service providers are not responsible, on the basis of the Data Protection Directive, for personal data appearing on web pages they process," the court said in a statement communicating Jaaskinen's opinion.

This opinion follows a complaint by a Spanish man that an auction notice of his home after it was repossessed infringes his privacy and should be deleted from Google search.

A final judgment on the case is expected before the end of this year. A that they cannot delete lawful content and that freedom of speech should outweighs privacy in such cases.

The European Court of Justice is not bound by the general opinion of the advocate, but judges follow the recommendations in the majority of cases

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