The Australian government had to call in Google to erase politicians' mobile numbers from the internet

Photo: Justin Sullivan/ Getty Images.

Google had to be called in after an Australian government department published politicians’ mobile numbers online.

Despite deleting the list on Monday, cached versions could still be accessed.

Google has since deleted these documents from the network.

“The department has publicly acknowledged and promptly responded to the issue when it was identified and is working with our stakeholders towards rectifying the problem and ensuring it does not happen again,” a spokesperson for the government told Fairfax Media.

The numbers were exposed in the publication of a regular report of parliamentary phone bills by the Department of Parliamentary Services.

“While in previous years the numbers were taken out of the PDF documents altogether, this time it appears the font was merely turned white – meaning they could still be accessed using copy and paste,” Adam Gartrell reported on Monday.

The department has blamed a contractor called TELCO Management for the error.

Some politicians have since sought advice from the department as to whether they should change their phone numbers.

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