Google search result exclusion
Green Gazette SA has applied updates to exclude publications of the set of Government Gazettes, specifically Legal Gazettes (A), and (B), from appearing in Google search results.
Information appearing in these publications, including names, addresses, and identity numbers, which is classified as public domain by law, will no longer appear in the Google search results once changes are effected. This includes sales in execution, public auctions, business notices, company notices, orders of the court, estate notices, and insolvency notices.
This would offer individuals with personal details such as identity, address and related information appearing in Legal Gazettes a degree of privacy.
The exclusion would not affect searching on personal information linked to the guardian fund, and unclaimed monies listed in the National Gazettes. Individuals with unclaimed monies would still have their details appear in Google search results to assist in the tracing of monies owed to them through the fund.
Detailed & technical summary
Confirmation of the exclusion update can be reviewed in the crawler robots file at https://www.greenazette.co.za/robots.txt. No-index meta headers have been added to 263,000+ related web pages to facilitate exclusions which can be verified by viewing the source of the legal notice pages on the website.
As per Google support:
How long will it take for changes in robots.txt to affect search results?
First, the cache of the robots.txt file must be refreshed (we generally cache the contents for up to one day). Even after finding the change, crawling and indexing is a complicated process that can sometimes take quite some time for individual URLs, so it's impossible to give an exact timeline.
This document was last updated 04 Jul, 2018
Following the above privacy update, there have been subsequent requests to exclude further information from Google search results for publications including National Gazettes, and Tender Bulletins, updates which also appear in the robots.txt file.