So I thought I would try the simplest (or apparently simplest) approach first. Ask people nicely to remove my name – not their article as their work has much value as an example of what to look out for in spam that might indicate phishing attacks. The more information out there about not trusting every detail of unsolicited email from strangers (even if they purport to be from familiar places), the better.
I decided on the top 4, which covered the first 3 pages of google results. A blogspot blog, and 3 personal blogs. Here is what has happened with them so far. Bad news first.
The Blogspot blog appears to be abandoned. The post containing my name is the last post on there, and it is now 7 months later. While I have asked on there to have my name removed, I doubt it will have much impact, but I shall try again. Asking the hosting service to edit or remove the page isn’t an option at this point. Blogger is owned by Google, and as such will only take down pages if there is a matching court order. I will pester again. Sadly, this is a very prominent result.
One blog allowed me to submit an email to the author, however, it then disappeared in to a black hole. I will have to bug this one again.
One blog had no way of contacting them at all. I tried to guess email addresses but they all bounced or were undeliverable. I will need to rethink this one.
The one that worked….
So one of the bloggers I contacted understood immediately, and removed my name, replacing it with the word ‘redacted’. Perfect! Of course this now needed Google to know about the change, so luckily he had a sitemap.xml already present, so I could just add a bit of link juice and after about a week it was updated and no longer showing. Thank you Geoff Fox for appreciating the situation, and responding so quickly!