Since 2011, Internet Removals has seen many companies come and go that profess to be experts in Content Removal and Reputation Management. Most survive between 6 and 12 months, then later retire with a queue of angry clients seeking refunds or redress for further damage to their reputation. We know this, because we service many of these client’s when they come looking for assistance.
Over the past 8 years, we have identified many new businesses attempting to offer ‘guaranteed removals’ or guaranteed services. While one international organisation has a proven track record of pushing down content using SEO methods, we are yet to see agencies successfully deliver on their promises with respect to content removal.
The practicality of guarantees is great for consumers, allowing them to defer risk and ‘trial’ the service before making any kind of financial investment. The problem, however, is that many businesses (not just in Reputation Management) use this as a tactic to capture business, either for upfront deposits, extra services or to test their unproven methodology.
We strongly believe in competition as a market force to enhance the quality of services delivered to consumers; however, we feel it’s important to provide education on the risk of guarantees, which are in our view:
- That companies use your matter as a ‘test case’, without having any prior experience. These companies will profess to have previous cases and successes; however, many cannot prove this with signed client references or listings in known takedown databases.
- That as a ‘test case’ you can’t be sure of the representations that are being made on your behalf. All you need to do is look at the recent article by CBS uncovering a Reputation Management firm that was submitting fraudulent court orders to obtain success. The question is, at what cost are you prepared to achieve success?
- That success might not be permanent. Many companies use tricks to manipulate Google, Bing and other search engine results to make it appear that the content is removed, when in fact it’s just temporarily buried. This leaves you making payment, only for the content to return and a clause in the company contract leaving you stranded.
Another important consideration is that outcomes cannot be guaranteed when they involve third-parties and human input. Nearly all requests are handled by humans within moderation centers and many of these humans are only given 60 seconds to make decisions. Accordingly, anyone who guarantees that something will be removed, is in our view, misleading you or has an underhanded deal with the person who created/hosts the content.
At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you are sufficiently educated and make an informed decision that [hopefully] leads to the successful removal of whatever is concerning you.
For verified content removal, see our testimonials and media.
Internet Removals, The Content Removal Experts