Facebook gets more than 25,000 govt data requests

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SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook said on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) it received more than 25,000 government data requests in the first half of 2013, with the largest number from the United States.

The company’s first “transparency report” showed Facebook received between 11,000 and 12,000 requests for data in the United States, affecting between 20,000 and 21,000 users.

It also received more than 14,800 requests from 70 other countries for various government investigations.

Facebook said the report includes “both criminal and national security requests” but without a detailed breakdown.


“We have reported the numbers for all criminal and national security requests to the maximum extent permitted by law,” a statement by the huge social network said.

“We continue to push the United States government to allow more transparency regarding these requests, including specific numbers and types of national security-related requests. We will publish updated information for the United States as soon as we obtain legal authorization to do so.”

The report comes with US tech companies under pressure following revelations of a secret program, which scoops up vast amounts of data from Internet firms.

Tech firms including Facebook have been seeking to release more information on government data requests, in the belief that this would reassure customers.

Facebook’s report follows the release of similar information from other tech firms including Google, Microsoft and Twitter.

The Facebook report said at least some data was released in 79 percent of US data requests.

AFP

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