I'm optimizing the SEO for a friend's website. The original designer has created a bunch of links on websites they operate in order to increase Google Ranking for the new site. However, these links are hidden (incorporated in the tag or elsewhere out of sight of users).
I know that Google penalises hidden links. But will it also penalise my friend's website in addition to the referring sites? In short, I want to tell Google to disavow these domains but also don't want to blow up my rank.