The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is lobbying the Council of Europe to re-examine its proposed guidelines for companies running search engines.
The group has asked the council to add a number of provisions which will protect the privacy rights of users and make interactions between search engine operators and law enforcement groups more transparent.
Among the requests are recommendations that search companies provide users with notification about inquiries into their search history, and provide general information about interactions with government and law enforcement groups.
Additionally, the EFF is pressing for guidelines that limit rules on search filtering and allow search engines to disclose to users when search results have been limited or filtered.
"Because search engines play a central role as intermediaries, search engine records contain sensitive information about a person's intellectual, political, cultural, religious, psychological and physical (health) beliefs, conditions and actions that can be of interest to state actors and civil litigants," wrote EFF international rights director Katitza Rodriguez in a blog posting.
"These search records pose the most obvious privacy threat, since they represent some of the most sensitive data about individuals."
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