Google News article Google’s search engine now appears to have banned a number of news stories and social media posts, as the search giant tries to crack down on government surveillance.
A Google search for “how to stop NSA spying” now turns up more than 4,000 news stories, but fewer than 200 of those appear to be from Google, which was not immediately available for comment.
The stories include reports about “secret orders” from US President Donald Trump to spy on Google employees.
“Google News and the search engine result pages do not show content that is prohibited by law, including material that could cause harm or threaten the physical safety of users,” a Google spokesperson told CNNMoney.
The search results page does not include any news stories related to the NSA.
In one example, a search for an article titled “What is the CIA doing to stop us from being able to see all of your data?” turns up articles from the Washington Post and USA Today about the CIA’s “digital footprint.”
The same article about the NSA and the CIA turns up news stories from the BBC and the New York Times about “digital footprints” of journalists.
“The government has no legitimate reason to monitor these news stories,” said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Corynne McSherry, in a statement to CNNMoney on Thursday.
“We have been urging Google to make this information searchable since last year and have been disappointed that it is not taking any action.
Google must do more to ensure that search results are not being filtered out of news content.”
Google’s decision to pull news stories appears to be a response to requests by the National Security Agency and other government agencies to use its data to track and monitor journalists, human rights advocates and civil liberties advocates, as well as online content.
EFF has called on Google to disclose the details of the government requests, and the company has not responded to requests for comment from CNNMoney and CNNMoney’s sister publication The Intercept.
The Guardian reported on Wednesday that Google is currently working with the NSA to build a system that would let the government tap into Google’s servers and search for stories.
“As Google’s new Transparency Report highlights, the company is actively cooperating with the government to improve transparency about its products, services, and policies, including transparency about the nature and scope of these government surveillance requests,” the Guardian said.
Google’s Transparency Report is a yearly report that looks at the extent to which search engines are complying with federal laws.