Can I Get My Mugshot Removed from the Internet?16 May 2018, by Criminal Defense in
Written by Timothy Czekaj
In the United States, everyone is considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Nonetheless, people’s mugshots are displayed publicly on the internet soon after their arrest. These mugshots often remain online, even if the charges are dropped or never brought in the first place.
The display of your mugshots, which can severely damage your reputation and professional prospects, effectively amounts to being punished before you’re found guilty. Yet the law offers few protections to people whose mugshots live online. Getting your mugshot removed from the internet is an uphill battle, but with the proper strategy implemented by a criminal defense attorney from Czekaj Law, LLC, you can limit its effects on your life.
It’s Nearly Impossible to Remove Your Mugshot From the Internet
There are many websites that feature mugshots. These sites work by collecting photos and arrest data from local law enforcement websites, and then presenting all of the mugshots together on an easily searchable platform. Some of these websites enable people to request the removal of their mugshot, often for a fee. The problem is that, even if the website complies, your mugshot may be available on other locations on the internet. Tracking down and removing your mugshot from every website where it might be featured is nearly impossible.
Furthermore, search engines such as Google and Bing constantly scan and index new pages of the internet, including those that feature arrest photos. Once your mugshot has been indexed, it is likely too late to have it removed from the internet. Google does not honor requests to remove mugshots from search result lists in the same way it does for child pornography or copyrighted content.
Do Not Pay for Mugshot Removal – Consider Suppression Instead
Some mugshot websites make most of their money by charging people for the removal of their photos. By paying these websites, you’re not just feeding an unethical business, you’re also wasting your money. As discussed above, once an image is on the internet, someone will almost always be able to find it again. In these situations, the best option is to make it harder to find your images. This strategy is known as suppression.
There are online reputation restoration services that can help you with suppressing your mugshots from search engine results. However, if you have time and basic computer skills, you can take significant steps towards suppressing these mugshots on your own. Those with experience in reputation restoration recommend that you maintain respectable Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google + profiles with photos that present you in a good light. Make sure the profiles have unrestricted privacy settings so the photos on your various internet properties are easier to access.
You don’t only have to rely only on social media websites. You could also open a small webpage about your business or a blog about your hobby that presents you in a positive light. The more accessible information about you that is available online, the less likely it is that people will find your mugshot. This is because search engines will index your social media profiles and web pages, and then present them higher on a search result list than your mugshot photos.
Do You Have Questions About How to Get Your Mugshot Removed from the Internet? Contact Us Today
Getting your mugshot removed from the internet is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to restoring your reputation after an arrest. You may also need the assistance of a criminal defense lawyer from Czekaj Law, LLC to address the issue of your public criminal record. Depending on your situation, it may be possible to have your record sealed, or your charges expunged. To learn more about how to clean up your criminal record, contact us today at (717) 275-9770 for a free and confidential consultation.