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Who Has Your Back? Government Data Requests 2017

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Who Has Your Back? Government Data Requests 2017

Postby MrFredPFL » Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:56 pm

Story : https://www.eff.org/who-has-your-back-2017





In this era of unprecedented digital surveillance and widespread political upheaval, the data stored on our cell phones, laptops, and especially our online services are a magnet for government actors seeking to track citizens, journalists, and activists.

In 2016, the United States government sent at least 49,868 requests to Facebook for user data. In the same time period, it sent 27,850 requests to Google and 9,076 to Apple. These companies are not alone: where users see new ways to communicate and store data, law enforcement agents see new avenues for surveillance.

There are three safeguards to ensure that data we send to tech companies don’t end up in a government database: technology, law, and corporate policies. Technology—including the many ways data is deleted, obscured, or encrypted to render it unavailable to the government—is beyond the scope of this report. Instead, we’ll focus on law and corporate policies. We’ll turn a spotlight on how the policies of technology companies either advance or hinder the privacy rights of users when the U.S. government comes knocking, and we’ll highlight those companies advocating to shore up legal protections for user privacy.

The role of Who Has Your Back is to provide objective measurements for analyzing the policies and advocacy positions of major technology companies when it comes to handing data to the government. We focus on a handful of specific, measurable criteria that can act as a vital stopgap against unfettered government access to user data. Through this report, we hope to galvanize widespread changes in the policies of technology companies to ensure our digital lives are not subject to invasive and undemocratic government searches.







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