Facebook details global requests for data

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Facebook has been trying to become more transparent as a company. New General Counsel Colin Stretch posted Tuesday a thorough report of all government requests for Facebook data over the first six months of 2013. This report details the number of requests a country’s government has made to Facebook, the number of users’ data that was requested, and the percentage of requests where Facebook did produce data.

[contextly_sidebar id="2c9e903ffde4e4119684589e919666a4"]America is far and away the leader for requests, as Facebook noted that the U.S. government sent 11,000 to 12,000 requests for the Facebook data of 20,000 to 21,000 users over the six month period, 79 percent of which resulted in some kind of feedback from the social network.

Stretch noted that many times, these requests were to help government agencies catch criminals or aid in other investigations. He wrote that Facebook will continue to provide this data on a regular basis.

Stretch summarized this report:

As we have made clear in recent weeks, we have stringent processes in place to handle all government data requests. We believe this process protects the data of the people who use our service, and requires governments to meet a very high legal bar with each individual request in order to receive any information about any of our users. We scrutinize each request for legal sufficiency under our terms and the strict letter of the law, and require a detailed description of the legal and factual bases for each request. We fight many of these requests, pushing back when we find legal deficiencies and narrowing the scope of overly broad or vague requests. When we are required to comply with a particular request, we frequently share only basic user information, such as name.

For the full report, click here.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

 

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