Google experienced more copyright removal notices for URLs in the last month than it did for all of 2009.

The search engine processed more than 4.3 million URL removal requests in the last 30 days, and it plans to redirect this data as a signal for search rankings. The bevy of infringing Web content spurred Google to take into account valid copyright removal notices for websites to verify its search algorithms yield the highest quality results.

Google elaborated on its Inside Search blog

  • Sites with high numbers of removal notices may appear lower in our results. This ranking change should help users find legitimate, quality sources of content more easily—whether it’s a song previewed on NPR’s music website, a TV show on Hulu or new music streamed fromSpotify.

The search engine stressed it will not remove pages from results unless a valid copyright removal notice is received. Google further explained it cannot discern when a website violates copyright law, so the new signal will only sway the ranking of search results.

Check out the Inside Search blog for all the details.