Google says the number of requests by copyright holders to have content removed has doubled in the past month to...
1.5 million a week.
Under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act, copyright holders have the right to demand that websites take down links which point to content infringing their rights.
Google is the main recipient of these rapidly increasing requests, handling nearly 5.7 million from rights-holders and anti-piracy bodies in the past month, according to the search firm’s latest transparency report.
The number of takedown requests, to remove infringing sites from search results, has increased more than 11 times in the past 12 months, from just 131,577 a week this time last year.
Google's latest transparency report also shows that requests from the UK government for access to users’ private data had increased by 25% in the past year.
The company said in the second half of 2011, it had received 1,455 requests from the UK government to hand over users’ private data and that it had complied with 64% of those requests.
By comparison, the number of requests made by the US government grew by 37% to 6,321 in the same period, with Google complying fully, or in part, with 93%.
India made 2,207 requests, the highest after the US, with Google fulfilling 66%.
Google said it had complied with only 24% of requests from the Canadian government and did not comply with any requests from the governments of Russia, Turkey and Hungary.