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Ratsit to change search terms after criticism

Published onsdag 14 augusti 2013 kl 09.18
Photo: Nick Näslund/Sveriges Radio.

Swedish credit report website Ratsit has said it will hide personal information of women who live in shelters or who are using hidden identities.

The promise comes after Swedish Radio's P4 Östergötland station showed that anyone can use Ratsit to gain access to information like the names of women who have had contact with women's hotlines, or who live at women's shelters, as well as to find out the names of inmates in Swedish prisons and other institutions.

"We will now look at the different search terms that have been used in our search engine in order to list these types of institutions," Ratsit CEO Anders Johansson told P4 Östergötland.

"We will remove the possibility of searching for information using these simple words. We will also work to hide the addresses of these institutions and then you should not be able to list the people registered on these addresses," he added.

So far, it has been possible to find sensitive information about vulnerable individuals by using simple search words, but Ratsit has now asked the Swedish Association of Women's Shelters and Young Women's Empowerment Centres (Kvinnojourerna) to help determine which search terms will be removed from the site. The process will take about a month, said Johansson.

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